How Big Do Phalaenopsis Orchids Get?
The Phalaenopsis Orchid, sometimes referred to as the Moth Orchid, due to its resemblance to moth wings, can grow from 6 inches up to about 3 foot high and can spread from 8 inches to 1 foot wide. To ensure your Orchid reaches it’s full height you’ll need to ensure it is kept healthy by ensuring it’s kept in optimal conditions.
Do Phalaenopsis Orchids Outgrow their Pots?
It’s common for every plant to outgrow its pot after a few years, and orchids are no exception. After roughly every 2 years it will be time to switch to a larger pot to give room for growth. Here is how to repot an orchid;
- Firstly, you have to remove the plant from the container it’s currently in (surprise!) and check for any moss growth; if there is any, get rid of that moss.
- Check to see if there are any dead or rotten roots, if there are you can cut them off while being careful not to damage the health parts of the plant.
- Take a bark mix, and half fill the new pot.
- Put your trimmed root ball and spread it evenly but carefully.
- Insert a stake through the centre of the bark mix for orchid plant support
- Add more bark mix over the roots and leave a 0.5-inch space.
- Fill a cooking pot or bowl with tepid water and immerse your plant pot into the water for 20 minutes; the pot must have holes for good drainage.
- Lift the pot containing the orchid out of the water and leave the water to drain and when settling occurs, add more bark.
- Sit back and bask in its beauty
During repotting, don’t be overly concerned about completely covering the roots. When they grow in wild Orchids tend to expose their roots anyway. Orchids also sometimes sprout aerial roots like many other plants do, Monsteras for example.
When and How to Trim Phalaenopsis Orchids
Orchids can grow larger than expected and end up taking lots of space. If your plant grows too tall, it won’t benefit fully from the resources given, and therefore you may need to cut the stem to give way for a new one. Moreover, it’s crucial to cut the stem for a new flowering stem to spike after flowering. How do you do that?
Firstly, before you trim anything you need to keep in mind that Orchids are very susceptible when it comes to bacteria and germs. Therefore, it is good practice to sanitize your trimming scissors to prevent passing on pathogens to the plant.
For dormant Orchid spikes, you can cut off one of the spikes and limit their growth rate. For single spike orchids, remove the black bulbs to reduce their growth. Other orchids have multiple bulbs in a single bud, and at that point, you can cut the bud between the bulbs ending with two plants. If it’s a dying plant, trim it at the base.
What if you are cutting for flowering purposes? At this point, for a double spiked plant, you can cut one spike from the base and the other one just an inch below the last flower. For a single spiked one, you can trim it only two nodes above the stem’s base. When cutting for flowering purposes, avoid cutting at the points where there are leaves. Instead, you can cut slightly higher than where the leaves are.
You may sometimes need to trim the roots, and you should be very careful not to expose the plant to pathogens. Therefore, only cut dead roots using a clean, sanitized tool. Doing all that doesn’t mean that your plant won’t grow; the trimming process is continuous for as long as the plant lives.
How Long Do Phalaenopsis Orchids Live?
The Phalaenopsis Orchid typically blooms for no more than 3 months. People will then typically throw the pant away. But just because it has stopped flowering doesn’t mean that the plant has died. In fact, the Phalaenopsis Orchid can live for 70 – 100 years with the proper care and will bloom beautifully roughly three times every year.
So, If you take good care of your Phalaenopsis Orchid, it can grow up to 3 feet tall and 1 foot wide. This plant, sometimes referred to as a Moth Orchid, is famously beautiful and will undoubtedly brighten up any room that it’s in for up to 100 years. As long as you don’t throw it away the first time it stops blooming!