One of my unexpected challenges for 2013 is looking after some orchids. This one - a Cymbidium - arrived just before Christmas and is brightening up our lounge. You may remember I also received an unexpected gift of a moth orchid on leap day last year :)
The main challenge for me will be how to make them flower again. According to the RHS's cultivation notes, the Cymbidium's flowering is initiated during the summer months and is helped by having a distinct difference in day and night time temperatures. It also says the temperature should be kept below 590F, which could be tricky even in our climate. However, I'm up for giving it a go and will start by cutting the pictured flowering spike down to its base when the flowers have faded in a few weeks time.
The moth orchid requires slightly different treatment. When the flowers faded last year, I cut the flowering stalk back to just above the second node (joint) beneath the spent flowers. Mine hasn't developed the expected side shoot, so I'm taking the RHS's online advice and placing it in a cooler room for 4 weeks (the advice is 80F lower) to see if that'll do the trick.
NB This month's look at indoor flowers doesn't mean there's a lack of them outside, oh no. The Constant Gardener's issued a challenge last week where she asked us to count how many kinds of flowering plants we have in our gardens. Mine garnered a surprising total of 13. How many can you muster for Blooms Day?
Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day is hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens.