Tuesday, April 06, 2010

It's All About the Blossoms...

"The world well knows, yet none knows well, to shun the heaven that leads us to this hell."
~ Shakespeare's Sonnets

Seeing as how I minored in English Literature, (man! that got me a lot of job offers!) I feel qualified to interpret this quote, up above. I'm pretty sure Shakespeare was talking about getting Orchids to re-bloom.

I've received a lot of Why Bother? emails this morning, after I glorified Orchids in yesterday's post. From all sorts of gardeners questioning whether growing Orchids are worth it. "They're scary / They're fussy / They're blah, blah, blah."

All good points. (Especially that 3rd one.) But, riddle me this:

Why do we buy flowering annuals?
Because they flower forever and ever.

And, so do Orchids! The pretty pink gal in these pictures flowered from January through July! You can easily get 6 months of pretty indoor color out of an Orchid... all the while you're killing them.
My whole point is... you don't have to suffer through 6 months of non-bloom time. You could just toss her in the compost pile and buy yourself another one. That is, after all, what we do with our flowering annuals...

* I'm gaga over Phaleanopsis Moth Orchids because mine actually has re-bloomed. Which, naturally, makes me feel like a rock star. But, you could probably make this happen, too. She gets way more sun than she's supposed to. Plus, she's high as a kite on phosphorous and potassium. I water her once per week, soaking her for 30 minutes in warm water and highly diluted fertilizer. (Make it 2 weeks, in a non-desert climate.)

PS: This one's for you, dear Garden Faerie. A polka dot Phaleanopsis Moth Orchid could be a lovely dose of color while you're waiting on the baby Nasties to bloom. :))

19 comments:

Grace Peterson said...

Hi Kate~~ I think that each of us does something that other people probably would classify as a neurotic waste of time--one of the reasons people are so interesting.

You're a rock star in my book. Gorgeous orchid. It would be a shame to throw it away though.

Hocking Hills Gardener said...

I just love orchids Kate. Those two are so pretty too. The pink and yellow together is wonderful. I am still babying my one and only, but it is growing pretty well now. Slow as molasses though LOL! I am such an impatient person.It took me awhile to find a spot it liked to grow at in my old house. Fingers crossed it will continue now. If not I will just watch your grow and bloom. ;-)

Kate said...

Hi, Grace;
Thanks for the sweet compliment. Yes, I think you're right. I waste copious amounts of time on certain things that make people shake their heads in wonder... :)

Hi, Lona;
Slow as molasses, I should say. I'm not patient either. I think the only reason they do okay is the fact that they never really care if they get watered. (When not in bloom I forget about them quite often.)

Iron Needles said...

Well, once more into the breach. (I know some lit, too!) I will try something else with my two orchids that have done nothing since they stopped blooming after the first spurt. But I cannot just toss them...can't! (Poor little living things. It's all my fault you see....)

joey said...

An orchid lover too, Kate, these lovely shots fill my happy soul with glee (or my gleeful soul with happiness)! If near, I might have been the one to grab the lady slipper (unless I knew it was you). I give orchids a year to rebloom, then ... out they go! My snowshoes are tucked away (are yours?)

donna said...

I'm quite sure I say this every time I visit here, but you are so funny and I luv every word of it. I've been on a short blogging break, but I'm back and you'll probably see me around here more often.

I have no orchids. They look like a plant that my cat would have all kinds of fun with.

donna

Kate said...

Hi, Joey!
I so loved your recipe selection for today. No, no, as much as I'd love to say that spring has officially arrived in the mountains... we still have a snowshoe adventure planned for this Thursday. Soon, I hope, very soon...

Kate said...

Oh, Iron, you're suffering from the same Mommy syndrome as me. Kick that Orchid to the curb and start over. It's way different for flowers. They can't ever write a book about your actions!!! :D

Kate said...

Hey, hey, Donna and your Coo Coo Kid;
I hope all is well. Looking forward to your new posts. Thanks ever so much for your kind compliments. Good to see you again. :)

Shady Gardener said...

Kate, for some reason I've been fortunate this past Winter. I kept 3 Phal. orchids alive all winter and now they're growing new "arms" and buds! Yea!! ;-) I love your colorful blossoms. (You are right though. Nothing is worth agonizing over... I've also been fortunate enough to purchase a couple of my orchids on sale!)

sweet bay said...

Very pragmatic viewpoint. I like it. :)

Kate said...

Hi, Shady;
It's so exciting to see moth orchids rebloom. I guess they just need time... and lots of it. :)

Thx, Sweet Bay!

Snowcatcher said...

I have never tried my hand at orchids, but I've been stricken with them ever since I roamed a garden of them in Hawaii. You make me believe I might be able to tackle this! (But I gotta get the spinach, corn, beet and sweet pea seedlings transplanted into the community garden first to make room.)

Kate said...

Or, wait until next winter, when you desperately need some bright color. I bought more this month only because they were on sale at an irresistible price. I love having an orchid in the house during the long dreary days of January. :)

Rose said...

I don't grow orchids for the very reasons you mention, Kate. But I may have to re-think that position after reading this post. Other than geraniums, I can't think of any flowering annuals that bloom here for six months. And Lord knows, I spend enough money on annuals!

I've always believed that poetry is open to personal interpretation; I'm sure that Shakespeare must have been talking about orchids, too:)

Kate said...

Hi, Rose.
Yay! Another convert :)) My winters are long and orchids are such cheerful indoor flowers. I may never become a purist who coddles dormant orchids but I will happily enjoy their blooms!

Iron Needles said...

Gasp! I...just...can't...

The garden karma would be too overwhelming...

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Hi Kate, I do love flowers with freckles, I really do. I will ask my local friend Amy, who loves orchids, where I might find a Phaleanopsis Moth Orchid. I don't care about the months of non-bloom, personally. Isn't there something about watering and humidity and whatnot that important? I'll ask Amy!

Kate said...

Hi, Monica!
Well... I dunno. Ask Amy and let's compare notes? That's my big thing about these moth orchids. I just don't think you have to do as much work as everyone says. I live in a high plains desert so they'll never get enough humidity. Yet, I just discovered that the other one is planning to re-bloom!