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I was expecting some advice on how far back to trim the shoots that have finished flowering. I was also wondering if you might comment on the use of glass or transparent plastic pots - I've read somewhere that light helps root development by promoting the growth of a symbiotic micro-organism. True / not true?
Just want to say that phalaenopsis/moth orchids, need to be in a clear pot, to allow light to get to their roots, as they have a symbiotic fungi on them. Also, when trimming the flowering stems of the moth orchid, trim to just above a node below where the lowest flower was. That's what has worked for me.
i cut orchid back when finished flowering but have no w had any fresh flowers instead i have had WHAT I THINK ARE SIDE SHOOTS ONE I HAVE PUT IN FRESH POT WHICH APPEARS TO BE GROWING
Emma Crawforth

Hello Olive,

Phalaenopsis, or moth orchids are epiphytic in the wild. Basically that means that they grow above ground in trees, rather than in soil on the ground. That is why the roots are greenish, and like to be exposed to the light, through a clear plastic, or glass pot. Although I have been told not to cut off the flowering shoots on moth orchids when they finish, some of mine turned brown and died this year, so I had to cut them off. As lilwead says, if you cut the stem just above the node where the last flower was, the stem should remain alive, and hopefully produce new flowers in a few months.

Emma. team

ceris hughes

I've tried the stem cutting back to a healthy node, kept it in the bathroom under the sky light and recently started to feed it with an orchid feed. I've been waiting for more than 2years for a result!!  However the plant,(& ariel roots) are looking healthy and robust so a bit more patience.....  I was given another phalaenopsis that was looking quite stressed, the leaves drooped after a day and still are 6 months on but it's still in flower to my amazement.  I read that while it is still in flower to nip the ends of each stem so as i thought it wouldnt survive because of the leaves i did this and now have lots of new bud stems forming.  It's vital to do this before the flowers fall, will upload a photo if luck continues


I bought a moth orchid in July 2010 and it was still in flowers July 2011,But was looking a bit tired.So I cut the stem of only to see a new stem coming on the other side.But it did have a rest and looking lovely now with its new flowering stem in bloom.
I always have about 8 in flower and another 12 resting or just starting sending up a new stem.
I have stop buying fresh flowers because you can get an orchid for £6.00 and it would last 6 months or more..

I was advised to just trim the stem on one of mine as I normally cut it down after flowering. I was delighted to find a new bud appearing shortly after and am now enjoying this plants second flush of lovely flowers. You know what I will be doing again......

i have found what appears to be a new orchid plant growing from an old flower stem.It has baby leaves etc.What should I do about it?
Emma Crawforth

Hello Anne,

How exciting, you have what is called a keiki! These are baby orchids that grow on the stems of a mother plant. You can grow a new plant from this, but let it produce a root system and leaves before you cut it off the mother plant and pot it up.

Emma team

my orchid is in flower and has developed leaves at the top . can iuse this to create a new plant
Are clear plastic pots better than terracotta ?
Hey Adam, thank you for your very good instructions about growing Orchids. I have always been told that Orchid roots like to see daylight and to keep them in clear pots? What do you think because you say put them in terracotta pots?
Kate East London


Does anyone have any advice on how it is best to water an orchid and how often?

Alina W

Water when it's dry - look at the roots around the outside of the pot. If they don't look green and vibrant, then water. You will find that it's between every 2-3 weeks.

Thank you Alina W, just to clarify should I use tap water or rain water and should it be room temperature or not?

Thank you for your patience only I lost my 1st orchid and don't want a repeat performance.


JUNE BAYNHAM wrote (see)

What about it

I have a problem with little fungus creatures which leave a sticky residue and bunch behind the flower hear. they also gather under the leaves. I was them off and treat frequently with a home made spray of Neem Oil. What are they, why are they there and is there a way to eradicate them altogehter

hello, I think you have the problem because of the white mold. You repotting the plant. But look here at first, good luck, ThaiGer


I had two orchids given to me back in July as 60th birthday presents. However, houseplants and me rarely get on, so I was dismayed when I read about cutting/niping the stems before the flowers drop.  Sadly, all mine have now dropped and the main stem is going brown. Is it too late to save it by cutting off the brown stem and giving it a watery feed?  Both plants are in clear pots and are of the same type.