Phalaenopsis, the moth orchid, is perhaps the best orchid for growing in the home, and is also a favorite with greenhouse growers. Well-grown plants can flower often, sometimes with a few flowers throughout the year, though the main season is late winter into spring. Average home temperatures and conditions are usually sufficient. Flower stems on certain hybrids can be forced to rebloom by cutting the tip off after the initial flowering. Only healthy plants should be induced to flower repeatedly. Culture for Doritis, a related genus, thought by some to be conspecific with Phalaenopsis, and Doritaenopsis, a hybrid between the two genera, is the same as for pure Phalaenopsis.


    Thanks for stopping by my Virtual Greenhouse!

    First, about me. I'm the Webmaster and Newsletter Editor for the Sacramento Orchid Society and my greenhouse is located in Elk Grove, CA. My orchids and greenhouse help me relax and have become my oasis.

    My greenhouse is a 12' x 18' aluminum framed, kit greenhouse from Conley . During the summer I have to coat it with a thick coat of shading paint and 2 layers of 47% shadecloth to prevent the summer sun from frying my orchids. I have a Jaybird fogger, a misting system and evaporative cooler running all summer long to keep the temps. down. During the winter I remove the shadecloth and have a Southern Burner vented gas heater. All my climate control systems are wired through thermostats. I also have a reverse osmosis water system installed in there which is tied to my fogger. What we do for our orchids!





    Alan is an accredited AOS Judge and actively supports local Bay Area societies with presentations on various topics related to Orchids.







    International Phalaenopsis Alliance

    The IPA was formed in 1990 to promote the appreciation, cultivation and conservation of Phalaenopsis orchids. The IPA's mission is to:

    • Publish the Phalaenopsis Journal, a quarterly magazine featuring color photography including articles on new lines of breeding, cultural techniques and other subjects of interest to Phalaenopsis growers.

    • Stage an annual symposium at various locations around the world filled with workshops and lectures from the foremost Phalaenopsis growers and hybridizers.

    • Bring together growers worldwide to share and to promote our passion for Phalaenopsis orchids.

    • Host PHALS Digest, an online e-mail discussion forum for our members to communicate about Phalaenopsis and orchid growing.

    • Maintain a Business Directory of IPA Members.

    • Sponsor Phalaenopsis related projects such as the revision of the genus, Phalaenopsis: A Monograph by Dr. Eric A. Christenson.

    • Provide conservancy funds to assist in the support the Phalaenopsis species collection at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens.

    This website is just a small part of the IPA, and in the upcoming months and years we expect to expand it to meet the ever increasing needs of our members.





    Although Jane and Rod Carpenter have retired in 2007, the web site remains as a source for beginners and novices. 

    We started with one greenhouse and a desire to grow these lovely plants. Now we are 4 greenhouses strong and over 7,000 blooming size plants. Since our beginning, we have won many show awards and several A.O.S. (American Orchid Society) judging’s for our outstanding plants. We have also developed over the years, several new crosses which have proven to be remarkable. Everyone asks the same question when coming to the nursery…     What does JA-RO-CA stand for?     The nursery was named after its owners:  Janet (JA) and Rod (RO) Carpenter (CA).


    Editors Note:Reprinted AOS culture sheets, so novices and experienced growers can skip this.







    Odom’s Orchids, Inc. is one of the largest retail growers and shippers of orchids in the United States. We have the largest selection of high quality orchid plants found anywhere.


    Odom's Orchids focus on Cattleyas, Phalaenopsis, Lady Slippers, Oncidium, Cymbidiums, Vandaceous and select others including "house specialties" 



    Orchid Wheel




    We have designed an ORCHID WHEEL that is made of a durable plastic. Important cultural information is printed on one side of the wheel about orchid genera, temperature, water, potting mixes and fertilizing requirements. The other side of the wheel has information on how to identify insects and diseases, along with suggestions on what chemicals to use. This is a fun and fast reference tool. Makes an excellent gift for your orchid friends! (Wheel diameter approximately. 10.5" – overall length approximately 13".)


     This item can be purchased from the above vendor



    Welcome to Orchids by Richard


    I am happy to share with you photos of Orchid Blooms from my Orchid Plants in my Orchid House at home. I have grown varieties of Orchids, from Dendrobiums, Oncidiums, Phlaenopsis, Cattleyas, Vandas to some Ground Orchids like Cymbidiums and Epidendrums.

    My first orchid plant was a miniature white Dendrubium. I was inspired to grow some more after I saw the first bloom of my very first orchid plant here in California, and I am quite successful in growing them, to pass some boring times. Each time it blooms, I take a picture for it will not be the same with the next one. Now I am sharing them with you.

    I hope you will enjoy the photographs and a few videos of my little Orchid Collection, and I thank you for visiting my blog.







    Don't let the German name be a deterrent, the web site is available in English. I even made sure you arrive at the English version. 

    More on-line store for purchasing orchids, but they do a great job describing what they sell, how best to grow it and excellent photography.  This is a great resource for researching how to grow orchids. 


    Editor's Note:

    I use there general orchid class information on this web site.





    Address:15819 Del Monte Farms Rd, Castroville, CA 95012


    The Orchid Zone is a premier breeder of Paphiopedilum, Phragmipedium and other genera of orchids. The Orchid Zone is also the proud owner of the Golden Gate Orchids collection of Odontoglossum.

    The Orchid Zone was founded by Terry Root in 1981. The quality of our collection and the success of our breeding lines are entirely due to Terry’s hard work, passion, and insight.


    Dr. John Chant is an occasional guest speaker at Bay Area orchid societies.






    ...Zuma Canyon Orchids has served the Malibu/Los Angeles area growers, hobbyists, and enthusiasts by providing the highest quality phalaenopsis and dendrobiums, raised in our Malibu greenhouses since 1971.


    George Vasquez has been growing orchids for 30 years. He is an accredited orchid society judge who has served on many American Orchid Society committees. Whether it be a small order or a large home installation, Zuma Canyon Orchids can help you find the right orchids for your decorating or hobby needs.




    Zuma Canyon Orchids was founded in 1971 by Dr. James McPherson and Amado & Maria Vazquez.  Dr. McPherson's love of plants and his association with the Vasquez family, who were at the time growing for the Arthur Freed Orchid Co. down the street, grew into a lifelong friendship that eventually turned into Zuma Canyon Orchids.

    After 20 years or so of association, Doctor McPherson passed away, and Jean McPherson, his wife, continued as a partner of Zuma Canyon Orchids.  When Jean retired, Zuma Canyon Orchids fell under the umbrella of the Vazquez family.  We continue to operate, we have received many accolades, and we represent approximately 50 years of experience from Amado Vasquez, and another 40 years of experience from Maria Vasquez, who ran the lab.

    George Vazquez has been growing orchids for about 30 years, is an accredited orchid society judge, and served in various positions on many committees for 17 years at the American Orchid Society. George Vazquez retired when he was on the executive board, last serving as secretary of the A.O.S.  During the last few years, when he was on the board, they founded what now is known as the permanent location in the new headquarters of the American Orchid Society.

    Zuma Canyon Orchids has a lot of years of experience in growing phalaenopsis and we hope that if you have any problems, or if you are looking for any information, that you will not hesitate to contact us.  We will be more than happy to assist you in any way that we can.

    It is easy for us to say that in the last past 50 years, Amado, George and Maria have been involved in receiving, both at Arthur Freed and at Zuma Canyon Orchids, well over 800 A.O.S. awards and at least 8 or more F.C.C. gold medals at world orchid conferences.


    CONTACT US Zuma Canyon Orchids is located in the city of Malibu, 5949 Bonsall Dr., right before Zuma beach heading north on the PCH. Office Phone: (310) 457-9771 Office Fax: (310) 457-4783 Office Email: Email George Office Hours: Monday-Saturday 8AM- 4PM 





    photos from the 2010 Santa Barbara International Orchid Show.  The large display pictured contains flowers from Ventura Farms and the private collection of David Murdock. Ventura Farms brought in George Vasquez to design, consult on the orchids, and work with Estate Manager Jaime Zamora on the award winning presentation titled, “El Jardin de Tranquilidad”. The gallery can be found here.



    The Genus Phalaenopsis is one of the easiest and most rewarding orchids for the beginner, with or without a greenhouse. Following are a few basic cultural guidelines. The larger, more mature plants can bloom for three monthsat a time, and in some cases can bloom twice a year.

    LIGHT; Phalaenopsis grow best at approximately 1000 foot candles. (Most photo stores will have foot candle light meters.) These plants are never to receive direct sunlight. The older the plant, the more tolerant to light. The ideal light condition for an apartment or windowsill grower would be a southern exposure. The key to light is "hours of daylight." In the winter the plant must receive 12 hours of light. Remember the key word is "daylight hours." Just morning or afternoon light is not enough for proper growth. Always filtered light - never direct sunlight.

    TEMPERATURE; Phalaenopsis will grow between 60° and 90° F, the optimum night temperature is 68° and 68° and 85° F during the day. However, plants will grow reasonably well at temperatures of 64° to 65°F at night and warmer day temperatures.

    HUMIDITY; Relative humidity during the daytime should be approximately 70%, and at night about 50% because when night temperature drops, the relative humidity will increase. The easiest way to provide adequate humidity in a home is to fill a plastic or glass tray with gravel or small rocks, and keep a layer of water at the bottom of the tray. The pot should be placed on top of the gravel stones, making sure the bottom of the pot does not come in contact with the water. As the water in the bottom of the tray evaporates, the plant will receive that humidity. It is the plant that should get the humidity, and therefore, the tray should be approximately the width of the leaf and the length of the leaf spread (from the tip of one leaf to the tip of the opposing leaf).

    AIR MOVEMENT; Good air movement will prevent fungus and spores from settling on the plant and will also prevent spotting on the flowers due to high humidity. Good cross ventilation is sufficient, however, if you must lock up your home or apartment -especially if you are going to leave for a day or two in warm weather-  it is important to run a fan for the length of time you are away. In a greenhouse, it is important to have air movement 24 hours a day, simply because the relative humidity increases with night temperature and because of the area and size. Air movement is essential!!!


    Orchids in bark can be watered every 5 to 7 days by giving the plant a complete drenching when it's dry.

    For orchids in arrangements, you need to remove the decorative moss on top for the moment and lightly water each pot, making sure not to put any water in the crown of the plants or any place it may stagnate. (Some plants in moss stay moist for more than three weeks, so check these before you water.)

    Orchids in moss can be watered every two to three weeks because they retain more water than in bark. Water in the morning when plants are driest.

    FERTILIZER; Our fertilizer contains all the nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus, calcium, zinc and iron, as well as all the trace elements needed for growing in fir bark -whether you feed every watering, or every other watering. Plain water every four or five weeks will flush out mineral or salts that build-up in the pot.

    POTTING; This has the greatest variance of all the culture requirements. Because of different regions in the United States, and world-wide as well, it will vary whether you use fir bark or moss, tree fern, fiber -or whether you will be growing the plant in pots or on plaques. The major requirement is that they have very good drainage. The majority of growers in the United States, especially commercial growers, use fir bark. (Medium size ½" to 5/8" for mature plants. Fine size 1/8" to ¼" for small seedlings). This bark eventually decomposes, so plants should be repotted about every 18 months to two years.