When should I water my orchids?

michigoose(Z5OH)January 1, 2013

When to water will vary based on type of orchid and what the conditions are. Over watering is probably the major cause of orchid death with new growers.

The best thing is to develop a method of knowing WHEN to water. Some people go by "heft." Lift the pot right after watering. Know what it feels like. When it is extremely light, water.

Two other methods use either a finger or skewer, but are very similar. For finger method, you stick your finger into the pot up to the 2nd joint (your knuckle). If it feels cool or moist, then don't water. If it feels warm or dry, then water. The skewer test is to stick a bamboo skewer (or wood, or a sharpened pencil) in about 2" deep. Look at the end. If it looks moist, don't water. If it doesn't look moist, roll it across your cheek or your upper lip. If it feels cool or moist...don't water. If it feels warm and dry, water.

Generally, most people water their orchids in the morning as this gives the orchids plenty of time to drain when the cooler evening temperatures come; and it is more likely that wayward drops have had time to evaporate.

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