Within the genus Odontoglossum, we can recognize about 300 species of orchids coming from Central and South America. Today, there are numerous hybrid varieties of the orchid Odontoglossum, created as a result of pollination between different species of orchid. These are epiphytic orchids, with long ribbon-like leaves and thin, thin roots, compared to common orchids. The stems of the flowers are hanging or erect and consist of a minimum of 5 to a maximum of 20 flowers.
Generally, flowering lasts for several weeks. Over time, the plant becomes more resistant as the years go by and even the flowers tend to last longer. These are particularly beautiful and have a great visual impact. Stained and coloured, they have variable lips and are usually smaller than the petals.
These orchids like bright positions, but far from the sun rays that could cause the burning of the leaves and consequently, compromise the general development of the plant; even excessive lighting could cause the rapid yellowing of the same. In summer, they can be placed outside, in a semi-shaded position, preferring well ventilated places. In winter, they are to be placed in a house or in a temperate greenhouse, where the temperature is in any case above 15°C.
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- They decorate terraces, balconies and garden corners.
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Water abundantly, keeping the substratum constantly partially moist, but avoiding soaking the soil and leaving the roots in direct contact with the water; we suggest placing the pot in a container filled with expanded clay, so that the water of the watering can drain freely from the pot, in winter drastically decrease watering, while avoiding that the soil dries completely.
Every 15-20 days, in spring and summer, add some orchid fertilizer to the water of the watering, using a dose equal to half the recommended dose on the package.
The odontoglossum have more delicate roots than many other species of orchids, so we recommend a substrate of cotlivazione a little lighter and loose, use a mixture of bark and sphagnum, with the addition of soil leaves. If the plants show a poor growth and lack of flowering, it is advisable to repot them in larger containers.
The multiplication of this orchid takes place by division of the heads, immediately placing the new plants in a single container, we practice preferably at the beginning of the spring season.
Dontoglossum: Pests and diseases
This orchid can sometimes be attacked by aphids that affect the flowers and leaves of the plant sucking the sap. It is advisable to treat the plant with specific pesticide products. Another harmful parasite for our orchid is the cochineal, which behaves in a very similar way and weakens the plant by depriving it of sap. It is important to increase the humidity of the environment and rub the leaves with a cotton ball soaked in alcohol to manually remove the pests.
Another problem is excessive watering. When this happens it is possible that water stagnations and root rot develop that are particularly harmful to the growth of our orchid. Therefore, pay attention to watering following the specific cultural needs of the plant.