I was at the FTI market last Saturday and ran across these spectacular orchids, transported from the “bicol region,” according the vendor. They had huge sprays of flowers, and while I was not familiar with the species and neither was the vendor, I thought they might look pretty good as an arrangement back home. We had a few dinners with guests planned for the week and houseguests arriving later in the week, so I figured some flowers were in order. My favorite phaelaenopsis stall at Market!Market! was empty and the sales attendants missing in action, and besides a single pot of white butterly orchids can run PHP600-700 each, so in the spirit of cutting back on non-essentials, I thought these were a terrific buy…
Back home, we soaked the roots of the orchids in some water to remove any dirt and bugs. I then decided to put them in varying heights of clear glass vases, with most of them just stuck into the vase as is. Talk about simple to do. They should be fine for a week or more, with an occasional spritz of water. In some vases where I feared they might tip over due to the weight, I added water to the vase but the water does not hit the roots of the orchid. In one vase, I did surround the base of the orchid with some damp moss to steady it. Placed on a corner table, the orchids looked pretty good to me!
It might seem cruel or unusual punishment for the orchids to just stick them in the air with no water, but actually they quite like it as it replicates their natural habitat clinging to a tree or whatever. Just remember to keep them in a humid area and or spritz them once a day or so.
The only downside of these orchids is that they had a few more bugs on them that we bargained for, so on the first evening, a few bugs ventured out of the vases onto the table. The problem was solved on the second day with an hours sunning out on the lanai.
I bought 5 plants, and two of them had multiple blooms of up to 3 stems. Total price? PHP500 ($11) for all five plants. And they will easily last a week or maybe even two, and they will be planted in the garden after that!