Saturday, June 27, 2020

How to grow Slipper Orchids in Auckland

The second orchid of the year is my magnificent Slipper Orchid with 17 slipper orchids. Three are hidden.
This year it has excelled itself after a few disappointing years where it has produced just seven or eight and once five.
I have had it for 18 years and was given to me by a neighbour who was about to die. It is her memorial and I think of her every year when it flowers
To get them to flower well is very difficult but this year I found the right place for it to thrive. 
In Auckland, it goes like this. It likes the morning and early afternoon sun outside for the summer and no watering just the occasional shower.  Keep it dry. It does not like being disturbed so no cutting for friends or repotting as it will sulk for years. A small feed and watch for slugs all the time as they eat the bugs. This is the moment I would reach for the slug pellets if I had them. 
Water from February on, that is autumn here The moment it starts to flower usually in June, bring indoors and enjoy for a couple of months.
Next year it will possibly rest and it will be back to seven but aren't they gorgeous.
The secret of a nice garden is "never move!" Stay in the same place and learn what flowers for you. Takes about 45 years but what a reward.

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