How To Water Orchids in Bark (Exact Timing)

Soaking your orchids is a great way to maximize water retention.

Soaking them in bark or sphagnum moss isn’t necessary for routine watering, but it will help retain moisture and make re-wetting easier.

You can also soak them in decorative pots or bowls of water.

Make sure you soak them for at least 15 to 30 minutes.

watering orchids

Watering an Orchid During Its Dormancy Stage

After blooming, orchids require a period of rest or dormancy.

During this time, they strengthen their root systems, and develop new leaves, stockpiling energy for the next growth spurt. Dormant orchids can rebloom every eight to 12 months.

Although orchids are diverse, there are some common types.

For example, Cattleyas are air-growing species with ruffled blossoms that prefer a cooler climate and five to six hours of daylight.

Watering an orchid during its dormancy requires different techniques and approaches from those used for outdoor plants. Follow these 2 simple steps:

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i). Moisten the bark wholly:

The first step is to moisten the moss or bark thoroughly before rehydrating it. For this, you can gently poke a finger into the bark or moss to determine if it is dry or wet. If you find that the wood is wet, hold off watering until it dries out completely.

ii). Water Orchids at the right time

In addition to keeping the plant moist, keep in mind the timing of watering. Orchids in bark can be susceptible to dry spells or freeze damage. In addition, it may be prone to pests and insects that can affect the growth of the plant.

You should water your orchids twice a week, or more frequently if you are not leaving them for long periods.

A small pot can dry out faster than a larger one, and it’s best to choose a pot that holds more water. Then, keep the plant away from direct sunlight, where it might become too dry and die.

Orchids need water, but you don’t want to over-water them because this can encourage crown rot and root rot. If you water your orchids while they’re in dormancy, don’t forget to use a fertilizer.

Watering Orchids During Dry Spell

If your orchid is growing in bark, you may wonder how to water it during a dry spell.

The first step to watering your orchid is to soak it for at least 15 minutes in a large bowl of water.

This will help retain moisture and prevent root rot. You can also use an ice cube to prevent the water from dripping on the plant.

Orchids in bark can benefit from reduced watering during the winter months. They require less water than during the summer and fall but will not benefit from prolonged drought.

This is because their roots are designed to suck in a lot of water. Without this, they will rot and suffocate.

In winter, you can water your orchid once a week, while in summer, you should water it twice a week. Make sure that you have ample water in the container – you should be able to fill it halfway with water.

Make sure to check the soil with your finger; if it feels dry, you should water it again. However, if the soil is soggy, you should wait a day or two so that it can dry.

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It’s important to monitor the water temperature, since orchids can be sensitive to water temperature. Ideally, the water should be lukewarm or slightly warmer.

Some tap water can be too hard for orchids, so you’ll need to collect rainwater or buy spring water.

Watering your orchids in bark is an important step in maintaining healthy and beautiful plants. You’ll want to avoid watering your plants too often or you could risk of root rot and death.

Always remember that they prefer bright indirect light, and temperatures of 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit during the day.

They like a cool nighttime temperature as well.

Watering Orchids During Humid Spell

One of the most important tips for watering orchids in bark is to use a large bowl to water them.

The water should be deep enough to cover the bark, but not so deep that it will rot the roots.

After watering, poke the orchid with your finger or a wooden skewer into the bark to check for moisture. If the bark is darkened or dry, then hold off on watering the orchid.

Bark is a good option for orchids because it retains less water than soil and provides proper aeration for the roots. However, this method is not recommended for beginners.

The most suitable method for the growing of orchids in bark is to use a potting mix that contains both organic and inorganic compounds.

Using Artificial Lights on Orchids

Another way to water orchids and keep them healthy is to use an artificial light to provide them with the necessary light.

The artificial light should be placed 6 to 12 inches above the leaves. The light should be available twelve to 16 hours a day.

Remember, phals naturally grow in humid climates and prefer a warm, moist environment. This is because the humidity helps to collect moisture and other nutrients that help the plant grow.

If the humidity in your area drops dramatically, you may want to consider misting the orchids to increase the humidity around them.

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Orchids need consistent watering intervals to stay healthy and thrive. However, if the humidity is too low, you might want to consider creating a humidity tray for your plants.

By placing pebbles in the tray below the orchid pot, the excess water will evaporate, increasing the humidity in the area around the plant.

When watering your orchids, always be sure to remove excess water from the leaves and stems to prevent diseases. Water can cause rot if it gets inside the leaves or stems. So, be sure to wipe it off with a paper towel or soft cloth.

Watering Orchids During High-nitrogen Fertilizer Season

If you are growing orchids in bark, you must follow a different watering schedule than those in soil.

A weak solution of fertilizer should be applied once a month. During the summer, you can use a high-nitrogen fertilizer to increase the nitrogen content in the mix.

Fertilize your orchids as recommended by the manufacturer of the fertilizer.

The manufacturer recommends adding one teaspoon per gallon of water. However, you should cut this amount to half or one-fourth. This will ensure that your orchids receive the proper amount of food at all times.

When watering orchids in bark, you should make sure to remove any excess fertilizer from the soil before watering.

The salts in the fertilizer can damage your orchid if they are overwatered. It is also essential to flush excess fertilizer from the potting medium.

Fertilizing your orchids during the fall can help them survive the cold winter months. It can add another 2 or 3 degrees of hardiness to the plant, meaning a healthier orchid throughout the winter.

Also, try to fertilize the plants with a fertilizer that contains less nitrogen and more potassium.

You can also adjust your watering schedule to allow your orchids to have time to dry in between waterings.

It is important to remember that orchids only need 25-to-50 parts per million of phosphorus to be able to produce flowers.

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Therefore, adding more nitrogen will not increase the number of flowers.

The American Orchid Society recommends mixing half a teaspoon of 30-10-10 fertilizers with one gallon of water.

When to Water Orchids: How to Know

Before watering your orchids in bark, you should test the moisture in the potting medium by sticking your finger into it. It should be moist but not too wet.

If you can’t feel any moisture in the top inch of the potting medium, you should wait a few days before watering your orchid again. If you’re not sure, you can also test the moisture with a wooden skewer. If the skewer comes out clean, you should water the orchid.

The soil is essential for growing orchids in the bark, as it provides good drainage and aeration. It also retains water and is relatively slow to decay.

It is available in different sizes and can be used for repotting larger-rooted orchids. If you’re unsure of what size of bark you need, you can use a sharp pencil or a wooden skewer.

Watering your orchids in bark is an easy and convenient way to keep your orchids alive.

The water is released slowly through the bark, which makes it better absorbed by the roots.

However, the water accumulated in the bottom of the pot can cause significant damage to the roots. Ideally, you should use room-temperature rainwater. Tap water is also fine.


In this comprehensive guide, learn the art of watering orchids with bark. Discover the delicate balance between hydration and drainage crucial for orchid care. Uncover expert tips to ensure your orchids thrive, from selecting the right bark medium to mastering the watering technique. Elevate your orchid-growing experience with Plant Gardener’s insightful advice.

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It is essential to avoid overwatering your orchids. Overwatering can cause the plant to rot, and if you over-water them, you risk killing them.

Even if you find a hydrating solution, it’s important to use it sparingly. It’s also essential to remove excess water from the stems and leaves.

You can get orchid-safe misting spray bottles at most department stores or online.

The watering schedule for orchids in bark depends on the type of bark you choose.

Most orchids grow on trees and are epiphytes, which means that their roots are open to light. It’s important to give the roots adequate air to breathe.

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