Ground Orchid Plicata

FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)February 1, 2008

I've been wanting this plant for awhile and finally bought one yesterday. It has the purple blooms and is gorgeous. Do any of you grow this? Do you grow it in pots or in the ground and how does it do for you?

Thanks ~ FlowerLady

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It's Spathoglottis plicata. Mine is in the pot. Pretty easy. Just watch for scale. If you are in frost-free zone you can put it in the ground. I saw pic. - a lot of people have it in the ground. Olya?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 2:59PM
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They don't like to be wet and will not handle full sun without burning. Good understory plant, though. I've planted dozens of them on jobs and most have survived for several years.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2008 at 3:12PM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

Depends on your soil .If you have the usual florida sand
a pot is the best choice.You can always bury the pot.
If these are your first ground orchids keep them in pots
in a favored location until you get some experience.
Like most orchids they are sensitive to a host of climate and disease problems.
Will take some juggling to find a good location., so portable is better.
It's interesting that these are listed as "noxious weeds" in Hawaii and Puerto Yet can be a real challenge here in Florida. gary

    Bookmark   February 2, 2008 at 6:58AM
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Gary - that's because Hawaii and Puerto Rico have real soil not the crushed seashells and construction debris we're blessed with.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2008 at 7:59AM
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treefrog_fl(z10 FL)

Mine survived in pots, but are doing much better since I planted them in the ground last year.
They're around an areca palm and in the dappled shade of an old pine that spreads overhead.
The soil is sandy, but has a pretty good organic mix of old pine needles and leaves.
As Ricky mentioned, they're a wonderful understory plant, giving you that tall splash of purple color during the hot season.
They don't mind being dry, are maintenance free basically, although mine do get an occasional fertilizing with orchid fertilizer. (makes bigger blooms).

    Bookmark   February 2, 2008 at 11:17AM
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FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)

Thank you all very much for your input about growing these beautiful orchids. I have a couple of orchids in my lattice grotto, and have some of the wild garden orchids plus vandas that just grow all over with hardly any help from me. I was hoping these would be relatively easy, now I'm not so sure from what some of you have said. I will keep them in a pot and see how they do. Do any of you divide them, or have you grown them from their seeds?

Thanks again ~ FlowerLady

    Bookmark   February 2, 2008 at 11:36AM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

Flower lady
You can frequently pick them up at the box stores very reasonably. Look for the hybrids with the larger flowers but they may be more delicate.?? For me the best ground orchids have been Phaius and Epidendrums. Many people seem to have luck with Bletilla Chinese ground orchids. I get them to grow fairly well but they often skip flowering or do so weakly. Not enough chill?? Another is the jewel orchids the only place I can get them to grow well is in a terrarium and many people grow them as garden plants lol
There are also Calanthe , well as warm growing forms of Cymbidiums. The great thing about orchids
you'll never run out of variety lol
Have never tried any orchids from seed but would be fun
but given my luck with seeds . Mostly I have greater success with epiphytes though I'm still woring on making them "weeds" lol There are at least 40/50 species of orchids native to Florida but finding them is tough and all are protected of course. Many require distinct cool rest periods so choices would be limited in 10.
Good luck with your plicatas.!! They are sooo common obviously they've easy to grow for some people. Maybe you??? gary

    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 5:07AM
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FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)

Oh my gosh, don't get me started on orchids. I cannot afford them. I did get this big pot of ground orchids at HD, $15. That's a LOT for me. I like to get things cheap. I did buy this with Christmas bonus $ from work.

The nun orchids and Cymbidiums are beautiful as are the rest.

I've had orchids in the past that have croaked on me. : -( These that I will picture here are some I still have left. The orange ones and the Vanda grow like crazy out in the gardens. The dancing ladies, little yellow orchids (I think that's what they were called,) died on me a couple of years ago and really bummed me out.

Plus I have the Jewel orchid that a lady gave me when we stopped to look at her house that she had up for sale. Then I have my new ground orchids.

We have quite a few epiphytes also. They are fun to grow.

That's it for now.

I think these were called Dancing Ladies.

A friend gave me this and I don't have a clue as to what it is.

These are the little orange orchids that grow all over the place.

These are little tiny blossoms. I bought the plant at the Mounts one year, and during a hurricane the sign blew out of the pot as I forgot this one and left it out.

I was told this is a Vanda and it also grows all over.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 1:41PM
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abendwolke(9 FL)

The last one is the Vanda Terete, probably 'Miss Joachim'. This is one of my favorite ones, too.


    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 2:06PM
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FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)

Thank you Evelyn. Miss Joachim is so easy it's ridiculous! I'm always thrilled with her blooms.

I visited your web site and am so inspired by your gardens.


    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 4:37PM
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Chinese Orchid- Bletilla striata

I have the Chinese Orchid above. This is not a very good picture of it. I've had it for over ten years and it spreads nicely in some shade. The foliage looks like that of a palm.
I was not aware that there are several types of ground orchids.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2008 at 5:43PM
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olyagrove(z9 Tampa, FL)

FlowerLady, you have very pretty orchids!
Spathaglottis is one orchid I am still trying to figure out. It seems that it prefers strong filtered light. I have a few in the ground, and those getting stronger light grow better.
I added lots of manure and peat moss when planting.

I am thinking of keeping one in a large clay pot to see if it does better than those in the ground

    Bookmark   February 4, 2008 at 11:02AM
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olyagrove(z9 Tampa, FL)

How do you grow your terete vandas ( last picture ). Is it straight in the ground, or in a pot?
Looks happy

Thank you

    Bookmark   February 4, 2008 at 11:03AM
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FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)

Felix ~ Your Chinese orchid is gorgeous!

Olya ~ Here you are the orchid queen and you are still trying to figure out Spathaglottis! Yikes! That almost sounds disastrous for me a novice. I am going to keep mine in a pot to see how it does. I may have to move it to a different area than where I have it right now, as this area will get more sunny and hotter the closer we get to summer.

As for the terete vandas I don't grow them 'in' anything. They are just out there growing in shrubs, clinging to a cement pedestal, whatever. Sometimes I just break a piece off, with the roots dangling and just plop it somewhere else. That is my kind of orchid. : -) Do you have a website of your orchids and gardens?


    Bookmark   February 4, 2008 at 12:09PM
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Someone please help me!! I had planted ground orchids back in September. They were beautiful, but now the leaves are turning brown, and are ripped. I live in So. Florida, so could it be that I have to spray for fungis?
Are these plants considered acid loving plants? What's the best fertilizer for them? They put a weed cloth around the ground orchids, will this allow the granulate fertilizer go through it?
I need to be educated on how to take care of my beautiful ground orchids. PLEASE, PLEASE HELP!!!

    Bookmark   March 5, 2008 at 6:02PM
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Flowerlady.I ordered the camera you like so much..........

:) D`Ann

    Bookmark   March 5, 2008 at 6:07PM
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olyagrove(z9 Tampa, FL)

FlowerLady, thank you for information on the terete vandas - very cool, how easy they grow for you!
I grow mostly epiphytes and do not have much experience with ground orchids. Nuns orchids do well for me, though.
I post my pictures on Picasa:

Please post pictures, if you can. Where is the orchid growing (what kind of soil, light)?


    Bookmark   March 5, 2008 at 6:21PM
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The ground orchids are growing on the east side of the house. They receive the morning sun. We have rocky soil.
How do I post a picture with this message?

    Bookmark   March 5, 2008 at 10:50PM
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The spaths were the easiest of plants to grow in the ground for me. I devided the bulbs and have them growing all over the place, in full sun, in shade and everything in between. Granted the ones in full sun leaves get a little yellow sometimes. I cut them to the ground if the leaves get frost burnt and back them come.

Last year, I bought some new ones in other colors then the purple. Some have done better then others. But for me for the most part, like daylilies, I plant them and forget them. They get water and fertilizer with everything else.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2008 at 6:29AM
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FlowerLady6(z10 Fl)

Way to go D'Ann. We will be having fun taking pictures with our new cameras. I have to go back to the book to figure out how to do things, but that is only because I'm not familiar with the camera yet. DH did say that for macro pictures I should use the large setting to get all the fine detail, then I can crop, like I did with the first pictures.

Have fun!

I am dreaming of a sweet baby queen's wreath vine. I think it is so cool to have bits from other's gardens added to our own.

Olya ~ Loved visiting your website. What beauties you grow. I would love to be in your orchid house. : -) What are the purple fowers in picture #3 of your backyard spring 2008 album?


Katkin ~ My spaths are still in their pot, blooming like crazy. Do you divide your spaths after they finish blooming? I think I might divide mine to have more around. Do you have pictures of yours in the ground?


    Bookmark   March 7, 2008 at 1:23PM
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olyagrove(z9 Tampa, FL)

Thank you, FlowerLady!
The purple flowers are Salvia guaranitica 'Purple Majesty' :)

    Bookmark   March 7, 2008 at 3:25PM
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Olya or anyone that can help: I will try to upload 3 pictures.
Hopefully you can see the problem that I am having. My orchids are getting brown spotting underneath, yellowing and splitting of leaves.
What could be the problem? They get morning sun light and we have rocky soil.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2008 at 6:17PM
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