The Dracula Orchid is of particular interest among the many orchid species. Another common name is monkey orchid. The flower received this name due to the unusual color and structure of the petals. When opened, the calyx resembles a monkey's face. Many flower growers dream of growing this amazing crop in an apartment.
The described orchid species belongs to the group of epiphytes and begins its pedigree from the orchid family. There are more than 120 varieties of the flower. Wild forms of Dracula are found on both American continents. The plant prefers a humid tropical climate and settles in forests, where it adapts to live directly in trees or takes root in the ground.
Description of dracula orchid
Like most epiphytic crops, the flower is short and has short shoots. Elongated leaves have a belt-like shape with a pronounced dark green color. Shortened rhizome without lateral pseudobulbs. Varieties with folded leaves have been bred, which to some extent function as pseudobulbs.
The main advantage of the dracula orchid is the original color of the flowers. The shape, size and color of the cup vary depending on the variety. They are united by the fact that each flower contains 3 sepals gathering at the base. The ends of the sepals are extended upward. Outwardly, the bud looks like a vampire mask or a monkey's face. Flowering culture can be expected at any time of the year. In order for a perennial to bloom in an apartment, you will have to fulfill a number of requirements.
In indoor floriculture, the Dracula orchid is a rare exhibit. Not every species survives in a stuffy enclosed space and carries dry indoor air. The death of a plant begins with drying out of the roots and leaves.
Dracula orchid care at home
Location and lighting
Under natural conditions, the orchid takes place in the lower vegetation layer of the tropics, so the varieties grown in the apartment need bright and diffused light. Burning and scorching rays of the sun harm the leaf blades. The optimal arrangement of flower pots is on the east or south-east side of the building. When placed on windowsills that face south, the threat of overheating of the culture increases.
The flower has a negative attitude towards heat and likes to grow in cool climates. In summer, they try to keep the air temperature in the room at 25 ° C. With the onset of winter, flowerpots are sent to a room with a temperature of no more than 12 ° C.
For the formation of buds, daily temperature drops play an important role. Florists are advised to regularly observe the temperature difference between day and night. The interval must be at least 4 ° C. It is desirable that the room be cool at night.
In the homeland of the orchid, rainy weather prevails. In the morning the forest is filled with fog, there is an increased humidity of the air. Similar conditions must be created for indoor perennial species. You can increase the humidity in the room by constant ventilation. Stale air is the main cause of the appearance of various bacterial diseases and fungi.
The amount of watering depends on the environment in which the plant is kept. If the room is dark and cool, the soil is rarely watered and, conversely, when the room is stuffy and warm, the need for moisture increases. For watering, the water is defended in advance so that it becomes soft.
Dracula orchid is grown in low flowerpots or hanging baskets, which are filled with a special substrate. In some cases, blocks are used. To mix a suitable soil, take charcoal, chopped pine bark, fern roots and sphagnum. The acidity level of the soil should be between 5.5 and 6.5 pH.
The culture is fed at the stage of intensive growth, but not more often than after the 3rd watering. Complex fertilizers are used. The dose indicated on the package is halved. Overfeeding will only aggravate development and will have a bad effect on budding.
Dracula orchid does without transplant for a long time. However, if the processes begin to form a new root system, you should not ignore this fact, but immediately transplant the flower into a flowerpot one size larger than the previous one.
The dracula orchid does not experience a state of dormancy and is able to bloom at any time of the year. Experienced growers manage to achieve flowering several times a year.
Dracula orchid breeding methods
Reproduction of cultivated species of dracula orchids is carried out in a vegetative way. When the bushes grow to a large size, they are divided into parts. It is important that 4-5 sprouts remain in the cuttings.
Growing a dracula orchid at home
Types and varieties of orchids
By Olga · Published 04/01/2015 · Updated 08.06.2018
All flowers are beautiful in their own way, but there is a flower that can bewitch with its magnificent, truly royal appearance. We are talking about orchid.
Have you ever been to greenhouses or landscape design centers? How can you tear yourself away from the rows where the orchids are displayed?
How can you refrain from buying your favorite copy, despite the huge variety of other equally beautiful flowers? It is, indeed, a magical plant, with which many legends and myths are associated. And how not to get confused among the species diversity of orchids and choose the one that you can grow on your own at home?
In this article, we want to help you a little and talk about the most popular and adapted to our window sills types of orchids.
You can find a detailed description of this crop and agricultural techniques for growing it in an apartment in our previous article. We advise you to read it before choosing the right orchid variety for you.
Are violets the flowers of loneliness?
Many people believe that Saintpaulia is the flower of loneliness. This plant has such a strong female energy that a man next to him feels uncomfortable and depressed. As a result, scandals often arise in the family. And very often a man leaves a woman.
Likewise, a single young man cannot be with a woman for a long time if a violet grows in his house. The surplus of female energy puts pressure on the girl, and she feels superfluous in this house and leaves the man.
That is why single women and single men are so afraid of Saintpaulia. However, is it true that violets on the windowsill are muzhegons, flowers of loneliness, and destroy personal life, or is it just an invention of people who do not want to make concessions and compromises to create strong family relationships, you need to figure it out. After all, blaming the plant for everything is not entirely reasonable. The times of the Middle Ages have passed and we need to look at things soberly. According to psychologists, the loneliness of people, first of all, is in the person himself. In his perception and attitude towards people of the opposite sex.
Unwillingness to understand yourself, but to blame something or someone. After all, there are numerous examples of strong married couples in whose house violets grow and bloom. And their bonds did not become less strong because of this.
The use of phosphoric acid.
Phosphoric acid is widely used. It is used in agriculture, animal husbandry, construction, medicine and in everyday life.
The main consumption is the production of phosphorus and combined fertilizers: phosphorus salts of ammonium, sodium, calcium, manganese and aluminum, as well as for organic synthesis, in the production of activated carbon and film, for the production of refractories, refractory binders, ceramics, glass, fertilizers, synthetic detergents , in medicine, in the metalworking industry for cleaning and polishing metals, in the textile industry for the production of fabrics with flame retardant impregnation, in the oil, match industry, for the production of reactive and food phosphoric acid.
Food grade phosphoric acid is used in the food industry as an antioxidant and acidity regulator (E338) in the production of carbonated water and for the production of salts, biscuits, and crackers.
The use of phosphoric acid in agriculture
Phosphoric acid, as a fertilizer, has found its application for a long time. The chemical compound, getting into the ground, and then, respectively, into the plants, allows them to survive drought, and also makes them more frost-resistant, which is very important in unstable weather conditions. With such fertilization, the nutrient layer of the soil becomes ideal for growing vegetables and herbs. The use of phosphoric acid in vegetable growing on drip irrigation provides significant savings on this fertilizer, as well as cleaning and disinfection of irrigation systems.
Phosphoric acid for vegetables
Phosphoric acid strongly affects the setting of flowers and fruits, and therefore, tomatoes, cucumbers and other similar crops have a very high need for phosphorus. For vegetables, a more complex “cocktail” is prepared for 10 liters of water: 1 teaspoon of acid, 1 tbsp. spoon of urea, 1 tbsp. a spoonful of potassium fertilizer, 1 teaspoon of copper sulfate, 1 teaspoon of boric acid, potassium permanganate (until the water turns pink). This mixture is fed 3 times per season with an interval of 10 days.
The use of phosphoric acid in vegetable growing on drip irrigation provides significant savings on this fertilizer, as well as cleaning and disinfection of irrigation systems.
Orthophosphoric acid for trees and shrubs
Feeding trees and shrubs in the fall, use the following mixture: 1 teaspoon of phosphoric acid, 2 tbsp. tablespoons of potassium fertilizers per 10 liters of water. In the spring, the mixture is slightly changed: take 1 teaspoon of phosphoric acid and 2 tbsp. tablespoons of urea per 10 liters of water. This solution is poured over wet earth, and then the wells are well filled with water
Phosphoric acid for soil
Fertilizers based on phosphoric acid also have a beneficial effect on the soil, contributing to its structuring, the development of soil bacteria, a change in the solubility of other substances contained in the soil and the suppression of some of the harmful organic substances that are formed. Also used to acidify the soil.
Soil acidification with phosphoric acid contributes to the enrichment of the soil with mobile compounds of aluminum, manganese and iron. These elements bind some applied fertilizers, in particular superphosphate, especially non-granular with its continuous introduction, into compounds, mineral and organic colloids that are difficult to access for plants are subject to great destruction, the absorption capacity of the soil decreases, the conditions for the life of microorganisms deteriorate.
Phosphoric acid for animal husbandry
In agricultural veterinary medicine, phosphoric acid is irreplaceable; it is used as a medicine for animals. Many urinary problems in pigs, cattle, rabbits and other domestic animals can be solved with this substance.
Orchid transplant: step by step
Not so long ago, orchids, conquering us with their exquisite beauty, were considered very rare flowers and were inaccessible to most amateur flower growers. But every year more and more often we see these marvelous flowering plants in flower shops. Fascinated by seemingly artificial flowers, we buy them, despite the fact that we know little about them.
Orchids are tropical epiphytes that grow directly on the branches of tropical rainforest trees. Thus, orchids do not absorb nutrients from the ground, but from light, rainwater and air. Therefore, these tropical plants do not grow in ordinary soil for flowers, but need a special substrate, the nutritional base of which would be close to natural conditions - like in a tropical forest.
Every 2-3 years, an orchid at home needs a fresh substrate and a new pot. The main thing is that you cannot transplant during flowering, since the simultaneous flowering and rooting takes too much energy from the plant. When transplanting phalaenopsis, which blooms for almost a year, it is necessary to cut the peduncle so that the plant can throw all its strength into rooting. The best time to transplant is spring and autumn. For active root growth, it is very important that your tropical beauty is in a sufficiently illuminated and not too hot place.
So, the process of transplanting an orchid can be called very responsible and at the same time quite simple. Step by step we will show you how to transplant this exotic beauty.
Preparing for transplant
For a correct orchid transplant, it is necessary to prepare in advance. First, pick up a new pot 2 cm larger in diameter than the one in which your orchid is currently growing. So, for the operation you will need a new pot (better plastic and transparent, as the roots photosynthesize), sharp garden shears, a long knife, a stick, for example, a bamboo stick, as well as a special substrate for orchids.
Removing the orchid from the pot
In order to carefully remove the plant without damaging its roots, knead the pot from all sides and lightly hit the bottom. If the roots are strongly adhered to the walls, gently and carefully run along the edge of the pot, thus easily separating the earthen ball from the wall. If this does not work, the old pot must be carefully cut without damaging the roots of the plant with the tool.
Removing the old substrate
Remove the old substrate carefully and carefully. Resolutely straighten the dense root ball and use your fingers to remove any soil residues. It is also good to rinse the intertwined roots under the shower with lukewarm water.
Having freed the roots from the old substrate, cut off all the dead root parts with sharp scissors (which it is preferable to disinfect with alcohol). In this case, the roots will be hollow, dry or rotten and soft. If you find pests on the peeled roots, place your orchid in a bucket of water. They usually die quickly. Disinfect with charcoal powder to protect the cut sites from drying out, decaying or contaminating with bacteria and viruses.
Preparing a new pot
While the exotic beauty is basking in a bucket of water, prepare a new pot for her, which must be transparent and have holes for good ventilation and drainage of water. First fill the container 1/4 full with fresh orchid substrate or drainage material. It can be polystyrene foam balls, pebbles, and expanded clay. The drainage layer prevents moisture damage to the roots and also removes excess water.
Planting an orchid in a new container
Carefully place the orchid in the prepared pot, trying not to break its dried roots. Fill the remaining space evenly with the substrate. To make the soil compact, it is recommended to knock on the sides of the pot. Do not force long roots into the pot, let some of them remain on the surface. They can hang from the edges of the pot, helping the plant absorb moisture from the air.
Filling free space
The free space between the roots is filled with a wooden stick, for example, a bamboo stick, lightly pressing the substrate, but without compacting it unnecessarily. And here you need to be very careful not to damage the plant.After transplanting, water the orchid no earlier than 5 days later so that pathogens do not get onto fresh wounds with water. At the same time, spray the leaves every day. Do not rush to fertilize either. Start feeding your orchid after 3-4 weeks.
The long stalks of the orchid, bending under the weight of the flowers during flowering, are propped up with a bamboo stick, which is placed as close to the stalk as possible. The peduncle is attached to the stick with a special clip for orchids or with ordinary hair clips. The support stick must be made of natural material. The lacquered metal supports eventually deteriorate and become rusty.
Proper care of orchids
What is proper orchid care? After flowering, the peduncle is trimmed with sharp and clean scissors. A faded phalaenopsis peduncle, for example, is not cut off, but shortened at a distance of about 2 cm above the upper dormant bud. For lush flowering, place the plant in a bright, cool room with an air temperature of 12 to 18 ° C.
In winter, many orchid species have a dormant period. Therefore, they are watered less often and fertilization is stopped. Phalaenopsis practically does not have a dormant period, they continue to grow and require constant maintenance of high air humidity, a lot of light and fertilization.
Translation: Lesya Vasko
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There are a lot of beautiful flowers in nature, from which it is impossible to look away. But there are plants with unusual flowers that resemble living creatures or magical images. Of course, the imagination of all people is different. But at such flowers, from whatever side you look, their image does not change. Orchids are especially striking in their unusual shape. Some of them are presented below:
- Angel is this orchid-like flower with white flowers. The plant has eight hundred species. The habitat is all continents, with the exception of cold Antarctica.
- Flying Duck - an exact copy of a flying duck figurine. The beak, wings, body are clearly delineated, as if carved on purpose. This orchid is from Australia.
- Spider - the shape of an orchid flower performs an adaptive function, attracts wasps for pollination. They attack a flower, cling to pollen on their paws and transfer it to other plants.
- Dove (Holy Spirit) - the peoples of the whole world associate the flowering of this orchid with a prosperous period in life. The white flowers seem to be made of wax, they look like a dove.
- Hot lips are unusual flowers with a bright red bracts. They look like a woman's lips painted with lipstick. This flower shape is necessary for the plant to attract pollinators.
Flowers need one habitat, moderate regular watering, fertilization. For frequent flowering, you need to give careful care, which depends on the condition of the flower, the time relative to flowering. How to care for an orchid before the buds appear, described above. Now let's look at the other steps.
During and after flowering
During the flowering period, you need to take care that the flowers last as long as possible, and not wilted after a week. For this you need:
- Fertilize the plant with potassium, phosphorus. These two components stimulate the appearance of buds, when used, beautiful flowers are guaranteed to appear.
- Humidify the air, a spray bottle is enough. Spray the area around the plant pot every day, or place small containers filled with water.
- Water the flowers. The irrigation regime changes during flowering. It is necessary to act according to a certain system: pour water on the roots, do it twice a week, not abundantly. The soil should not dry out or be very wet.
After flowering, water the ground once a week. When the rest period comes - once or twice a month. After 1-2 months, you can start fertilizing the plant with nitrogen. This will provoke growth, the appearance of greenery, and heal the plant.
The flower is transplanted due to lack of space in the pot. Manipulation is done when the flowers will fade, the petals will drop. Before starting, you need to understand exactly how to transplant orchids so as not to destroy the plant. You will need a pot one or two sizes larger than the previous one. Then follow the instructions:
- Remove the flower carefully from the pot without damaging the roots.
- Shake the rhizomes off the old soil, it is probably spoiled. Use scissors to cut off rotten, weak roots.
- Put the substrate on the bottom of the pot, place the vertical plant there, add the soil. All gaps between the roots must be filled.
- Leave space on top. You don't need to fill the pot to the brim.
- Water the ground, put the flower in a dark place for 1-3 days. Then return to the usual.
Buds do not bloom - what to do?
Sometimes buds appear, but wither without opening. Why this happens - there are several reasons:
- Lack of dormancy in the plant. You often change the irrigation system, air temperature.
- Incorrectly set temperature. Plant metabolism is reduced if the temperature is above normal or the day / night has strong drops. The flowers do not have enough energy to open the buds, the bud laying stops.
- Improper watering. You need to irrigate the plant a couple of times a week at the time of flowering. If there is not enough water, it stops the blooming of buds, trying to protect itself from death due to a large loss of energy and strength.
- Improper use of fertilizers. Fertilizing with nitrogen is good, but only during rest. During the flowering period, you cannot fertilize with nitrogen - it stops the process of blooming buds.
- Not enough light. Leaves, roots are vital organs. The plant will direct the force primarily to them, forgetting about the buds.
In order for the buds to bloom, you need to understand whether the flower has enough or something in excess. If there is a delay, you can choose one of the types of stimulation:
- Chemicals. "Epin" is sprayed on the plant from a spray bottle. Such manipulations need to be carried out daily, in the morning. Once a week, add 3-5 drops of the product to the water, pour the soil with this water. Succinic acid can be used to stimulate growth. Enough daily processing for three days.
- Temperature drop. You need to put a little stress on the plant. Lower the temperature by a few degrees at night (5-7). You can take it out to the balcony if it is not cold there. The temperature should not be lower than 14 degrees. The entire period of stress should not take more than 10 days.
Using these methods, you will strengthen the orchid, after which it will begin to open its buds.
The flowering time of an orchid at home depends on the species: for some varieties, it will be normal for buds to germinate in winter, for others in summer. If the flower does not give buds for a long time, you can artificially induce flowering using different methods. Sometimes, with the right approach, the flowering period can last even up to six months.