How long do orchids bloom: and how to make them last longer?
A question that is often asked is how long orchids bloom. Orchids are known for their delicate flowers – exquisitely shaped petals and colors ranging from the purest white to golden yellow to the deepest cherry red. But their blooms don’t last forever. In fact, experts say orchids will bloom for six to 10 weeks.
However, they can fade before six weeks and persist for more than 10 weeks. The quality of attention and orchid care you give your plants makes the difference between flowers that fade and wither almost as quickly as they appear and blooms that last for weeks. Everything from how you water orchids, when to repot orchids, and even knowing how to prune orchids all play a role in flower longevity.
We’ve curated the best advice to find the answer to every orchid lover’s question: how long do orchids bloom? After all, their elegance, shape and beauty make them the best indoor plants to decorate our home.
How long do orchids bloom?
Orchids flower for an average of six to ten weeks. The amount of light your orchid gets, the material it’s potted in, how often it’s watered, and exposure to cold air and drafts can all make a difference in how long it takes you to see and take care of it thriving to please her blooms.
But that doesn’t mean they’re actually that difficult to grow — orchids are actually considered one of the best houseplants for the winter, which means cold conditions don’t necessarily discourage choosing orchids for decorating with plants.
“Despite their elegant appearance, orchids are hardier than you might think. When an orchid blooms, it produces beautiful flowers that last for months,” confirms Kylie Wall, Marketing Manager at QS Supplies (opens in new tab)who recommends orchids to beautify a bathroom.
“There are many types of orchids, but most require a good level of light, so it’s worth considering if your room tends to be shaded.”
We consulted the experts for more information on how long orchids bloom and the top tips for prolonging their blooms.
How do you get orchids to bloom?
“The most important variable when growing orchids indoors is the light conditions. Most orchids prefer bright, indirect light,” says plant expert and garden writer Isabelle Palmer, author of House Plants (opens in new tab).
“Orchids also thrive in a wide variety of temperatures, so choose the best location in your home to meet the needs of the particular orchid you are growing.”
When orchids are in the best spot, sprayed regularly, watered once a week, and given a special fertilization about every three weeks, they will reward you with long-lasting blooms.
“A healthy and happy orchid should take six to 10 weeks to flower,” says Rachel Crow, gardening editor for Houses & Gardens. “After this time, the plant goes into a recovery phase where it regains the energy expended during flowering and is ready to bloom again.”
How long do orchids take to rebloom?
A common mistake when growing orchids is to discard them after flowering, as the stems can remain bare for a considerable time after the flowers are shed and it can appear as if the plant has died. Nothing is further from the truth.
“Millions of healthy orchids are thrown away every year once they have finished flowering. An orchid isn’t dead when the flowers die – with a little simple care they will keep blooming,” says Sarah Gerrard-Jones, known on Instagram as @theplantrescuer (opens in new tab) and has written a book, also called The Plant Rescuer (opens in new tab).
“An orchid has a natural flowering cycle,” explains Sarah. “After flowering, she enters a dormant phase for four to six months before flowering again. Remember to water it occasionally and give it some orchid food. It should bloom again, but be patient!’
Given the growth cycle of orchids, you can expect your plant to flower at least twice a year and possibly three times – giving you around 12 to 30 weeks of flowering time in total.
How can I help an orchid to flower again?
Knowing the best way to prune an orchid can help it bloom again on the same stem.
“When the stem is green, find a bump at the bottom of the stem and cut back to just above that point; it can bloom again from there,” says @theplantrescuer Sarah Gerrard-Jones. “When the stalk is brown, cut it off right away.
“If the roots look silver, soak them in water for 30 minutes to 1 hour until they turn green. Finally, place the plant on a bright window sill.”