Dendrobium
(DEN-dro-bee-um)

Dendrobiums are an great choice for the beginner growers. Flowers are available in a wide range of colors, sizes and shapes. From the time that the first flower bud opens, the sprays will remain in bloom for the next 6-8 weeks. If the plant is kept in a bright warm spot, the plant may produce multiple sprays of flowers. Please follow the guidelines below for successful cultivation.
 
Light- The majority of dendrobiums grow and flower well under Cattleya-like light conditions, which is fairly strong light, amounting to 1,500 to 2,500 foot-candles.  Sufficient lighting is must for successful growing and blooming. Dendrobiums prefer either an east or a lightly shaded south facing window. Dark green leaves are an indication of insufficient lighting.
 
Temperature- Dendrobiums can withstand hot weather if adequate ventilation and humidity are provided. They are best grown when the temperature is between 65°F and 75°F in the day and between 55ºF to 60ºF at night.
Keep in mind that temperatures close to the window on a windowsill will be colder or hotter than your general house temperature.
 
Water- Water your orchids in the morning so that the leaves are dry before night. How often to water depends on the potting media used,
and the size of the pot. Dendrobiums like to be in small pots (tight in the pot) and are usually much taller than the pot is wide. Because they are usually large plants in relatively small pots, watering twice a week is about average. They like to be almost dry before re-watering. The rule of thumb for watering should be as followed: More heat more water, less heat less water.
 
Humidity- Dendrobiums prefer 40% to 50% humidity. Humidity Trays may be needed, especially if a heater or air conditioner is in use in the house. You can also mist the foliage daily to keep your plant(s) lush.
 
Fertilizer- Any balanced orchid fertilizer (look at the numbers on the container, 20-20-20 or 15-15-15 etc.) can be used to fertilize your orchid. Feed weakly (1/2 strength) weekly works well for dendrobiums. Once a month use clear water to flush any accumulated salts from the potting mix.
 
Potting- Dendrobiums should be grown in Medium Orchid Bark Mix and should be repotted once every two years. Ideally, Dendrobiums should be repotted in the spring. Dendrobiums do best when grown in pots that are small for the size of the plant.
 
Tips- Give your plants room for air to circulate around them. Crowding of plants can lead to problems with insect infestations and fungus. A small fan will help provide good air circulation around your plants.
 
When your plant has finished blooming, you can cut the flowering stem at the point where it came out of the tall thin pseudobulbs.  Continue watering and fertilizing and within a year a new growth will spike to begin the blooming cycle again.