Cymbidium orchids are spectacular plants that flower in late winter and early spring. Once the existing container is full of roots, and the pseudobulbs (food storage organs) are packed together, it’s a good idea to pot them on into a larger container and give them a fresh zest for life. Or you can split the plant, to create two or three new ones.
Discover how to pot a moth orchid (Phalaenopsis).
The best time to do this is April, once flowering is over and new growth is about to begin.
In this clip from Gardeners’ World, Monty visits an orchid expert. Watch, to find out how to care for and report cymbidium orchids:
You Will Need
- Scissors, floral snips or secateurs
- 20cm pot
- Specialist orchid compost
Look closely at the plant. Is there still room for it to expand sideways as more pseudobulbs are produced, or has it really forced itself out of the pot? Tap it out of its pot to find out.
Divide the plant into pieces, using a saw, old bread knife or secateurs, making sure that each piece has at least three pseudobulbs. Remove any roots that are withered and dead, and scrape away some of the old compost.
Choose a new pot 5-8cm larger than the rootball. Place a handful or two of orchid compost in the pot (compost based on chipped bark is best) and centre the plant before backfilling with new compost.
Water with rainwater or cooled, boiled water to settle the roots in place. From then on, water very sparingly, perhaps once a week, until the weather is warmer.
Tips for growing cymbidium orchids
They tolerate cooler conditions than moth orchids and enjoy good, indirect light, just a few feet from a window. They also like a night temperature that’s lower than the day. Support the flower head with a stake.