If you’re curious about how long do orchids live, you might be surprised that you can expect them to last more than ten years. Perhaps this is one reason why UK gardeners love them and aim to learn various propagation methods. However, it’s worth noting that just like most plants, orchids will only live this long if they are in their ideal environment.
If your UK area experiences unpredictable conditions, it will be more beneficial to use a greenhouse. You can take comfort with the University of Florida’s statement that orchids are not difficult to grow. Additionally, there are many species to choose from, so you’ll indeed find the appropriate one for your environment.
How Long Do Orchids Live In Various Conditions
Remember that different orchids will vary in their expected lifespan. Additionally, the type of care they receive heavily influences the duration of their life. But in general, orchids can live for more than ten years, with different flowering periods per species.
The orchids will bloom, undergo a resting period, and you’ll notice that the flowers will start to fall. At this point, you might assume that the life cycle ended, but the beauty of orchids is that this only indicates preparation for the next flowering period. The flowers fade so the plant can store more energy for the next season.
While some orchids can live more than a decade, having them for up to twenty years might be a stretch. Old orchids will have a hard time producing blossoms, and they get prone to diseases more easily. Like all living things, the immune system of orchids wane as the years pass, so it might be best not to push them past 15 years.
How long do orchids live in a vase?
How long should you expect cut orchids to live? Realistically, they should thrive for one to six weeks as long as you care for them correctly. Caring means changing the water every two days and cutting ⅛ inch off the end of the stem each time.
You also want to prevent exposure to direct sunlight that can burn the flowers and leaves. Still, remember that not all orchids are best as cut flowers. Some varieties might live as short as seven days or fade and develop spots easier than others.
A helpful tip is that if the orchid is waxy to touch, it should survive well cut in a vase. Are there other care hacks to extend the life of orchids in a vase? Right after purchasing, it’s ideal for cutting ½ inches off the base before putting them in the vase.
You can also use a polytunnel and maintain a cool temperature without the risk of damaging drafts.
Orchid Life Cycle
Orchid seeds can take as long as two years to germinate, which is why some UK gardeners opt for other propagation methods. The plant can then start producing flowers after three months and only start rooting after the first blossoming. The bloom itself can last for months, so an orchid’s life cycle can be anywhere from 9 to 14 months and bloom every 8 to 10 months.
Extending Orchid Lifespan
Planted orchids on pots could last half a year and produce flowers continuously. However, it’s essential that you also understand their life cycle to know what to expect. For example, a common practice in growing orchids is repotting them to prevent diseases and support bloom performance.
Take note in your calendar and repot your orchids every two to three years to avoid any drawbacks. Now that you know this primary maintenance practice, are there other techniques to keep orchids happy and take advantage of their long lifespan?
Growing orchids indoors put you at an advantage because you can check the specific requirements of the species you have and adjust accordingly. In addition to the ideal environment, management practices can also make or break your orchids. For example, the simple act of overwatering causes root rot, which can potentially kill your plants.
To avoid overwatering, check the medium first and use a well-draining pot to prevent standing water. Orchids are also heavy feeders, so create a balanced fertiliser schedule that will provide all the nutrients your orchids need. Lastly, be on the lookout for common pests like scale and maintain cleanliness without fail.
Care for cut orchids
For cut orchids, you can also do some practices to ensure their survival for an extended period. To start, rejuvenate the orchid blooms by misting them with water upon arrival. Cut the stems’ end as indicated earlier on and use 100°F water for the vase.
Other than this initial care, maintain a cool environment out of drafts or direct sunlight in your UK garden. It would also be best to research what type of vase is best for your orchid. For example, Cymbidium orchids are better for slender but tall vases to ensure support and water uptake.
Orchids are one of the best flowers to have, not only because of their beauty but because of their potential to live long. However, do you know how long do orchids live in general? Orchids can live for decades and possibly more, depending on the species and care they get.
You can create an ideal and supportive environment in the polytunnel while also being strict with management practices. The exact expectations are applicable for cut orchids since they can live from one to six weeks. Much like planted orchids, these lifespans will also depend on the species and daily care they get.