Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Orchid Schmorchid



I bought this orchid a few months back. It apparently didn't like me, because the day after I bought it all the flowers fell off.


Lucky for me, the Internet provided me the solution! I carefully took care of my precious little plant, watered it, even talked to it...pruned it lovingly... And LO! My flower re-spiked and bloomed. Ahh...I was so proud of myself.


Orchids are known for being extremely high maintenance, so I got the orchid hoping my brown thumb wouldn't immediately kill it. Well, as it turns out, the particular orchid I purchased (and the only kind they carry at Lowe's) is the Phalanopsis, or Moth orchid, which is the heartiest orchid around, and "they" say is like any other house plant. So much for my bringing the plant back to life...It would have probably done it by itself.


Well, even though the Moth orchid is the superman of orchids, it still has one failing: Mealy bugs. EWWW.

Nasty. When the first blossom opened, this little guy was resting on the inside of the flower. I plucked him off, tried really hard to squeeze him to death, and then let his yucky body flow down the drain. That's that! Or so I thought...


Apparently, my mealy bug had a family.

Yuck.



It's like orchids have their own special type of orchid lice. They lay eggs everywhere: On the plant, in the potting media, on the pot, on the roots, on the leaves, on the flower, in the flower...and when they hatch, they destroy the plant.

And you know what's even GROSSER?? That white stuff ISN'T the bug. The bug is on the inside, so the white, waxy stuff is just like orchid bug armor. EWW!



There is a solution, though...

I had to uproot my orchid, throw away the pot, remove the potting media from the roots, and then give my orchid an alcoholic cocktail: 70% alcohol, 30% water. I had to soak my poor flower in that. The result was a very clean, bug-free, hiccuping orchid, that was singing some Irish drinking song very off-key. I decided it had enough when it asked for my phone number.

So, my orchid is now sober and pest free! I probably should have just chucked it. I had to find a special orchid pot for it, plus plate, special potting media, and a new spike support. Stupid plant.

5 comments:

Katscratchme said...

But just think how much better you will feel when your sweet little orchid thrives and has babies... cute little orchid babies with Dara Eyes....

shydandelion said...

Eeya. What a scary thought.

Zaphod said...

Orchid Schmorchid is a flower? All this time I thought it was a kind of small whale!

Rebecca said...

You have done better than me. I killed all three orchids that Victor bought me. They were beautiful and smelled wonderful. Now I have a bamboo pot in my bathroom and my bamboo is growing tall :)

shydandelion said...

Bamboo...yet another plant that caught a bug in my house and died.

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