Flowers makes me happy – they are vital and fragile at the same time – they are beautiful and magic. Sometimes I manage to invite the plant to bloom sometimes it just doesn’t.
One of the flowers that I enjoy very much is the orchid. We have several white Phalaenopsis. One of them has been blooming for the last 3-4 months (the images you see are taken 3 months ago). A coble of days ago the last bloom died and the spike was left naked sticking out in the air. It was time to cut off the spike and hope for a second round of flowers.
Because it was my first time to cut a Phalaenopsis I had to do some research to find out how to do it. I found a very informative video showing me exactly how to do and what to be aware of.
Shortly I learned:
1) Only flowers that looks healthy and strong and are not about to produce a new leaf can produce flowers for a second time. Flowers that are producing a new leaf should have time to do that in stead of producing a new set of flowers. Spikes on these plants should be cut off by the base.
2) If the orchid is ready for a second blooming the spice should be cut off just above the second node.
3) Make sure to use only sterile scissors (sterile by heat or with a sterile liquid). If you cut several plants make sure to sterile the scissors in between.
4) After cutting the spike put a little bit of grounded cinnamon (usual cinnamon you use in the kitchen for cakes etc.) on the top of the spike. It will prevent fungus infections.
5) At a Danish website I learned that it is a good idea to put the flower in a cooler place (about 17-18 degrees Celsius, 62.6-64.4 Fahrenheit) for 3-4 weeks after cutting of the spike. After this period of time place the orchid in the warm living room again. After about 90 days after this cool treatment it will have made new flower spikes and starts blooming again.
I also learned that even though you do all this in the most careful way your orchid might not bloom again. However it is worth trying.
You are welcome to comment and tell me about your experiences and share your knowledge about how to cut and take care of a Phalaenopsis.