Orchid 3 The Prudent Homemaker

I brought this orchid to church on Sunday as part of an object lesson. Women and men stopped me in the halls and in classes to ask me about it, “Is it real?”, “Do you cultivate orchids?”, and more. Everyone was fascinated by such a beautiful fresh flower.

I love fresh flowers. I love having them to look at every day.

Buying flowers is expensive, though.

Roses are easily $12.99 to $19.99 a dozen. They last a few days and then they’re done.

Carnations last three weeks, and they’re less money, but they just don’t excite me quite as much as stargazer lilies, tulips, or daffodils.

Orchid 1 The Prudent Homemaker


Enter the orchid.

You can get orchids all year long, but I like to get them in the winter.

I bought this one in early November for $11.

Orchids seem expensive. At $11 to $20 each (from the grocery store), they feel a bit pricey, like roses.

Orchid 2 The Prudent Homemaker


However, while roses will have died in 3 days, this orchid that I bought in November hasn’t wilted or lost petals. In fact, since I bought an orchid that had buds on it, it’s still opening, ever so slowly.

Orchids are simple. If you forget to water them for a week, that’s just how they like it. Give them a 1/4 cup of water once a week and they’re happy.

They like it humid. Our homes in winter aren’t usually humid, and I don’t even live in a humid place; I live in one of the driest deserts in the world. To keep my orchid happy, I keep it on the bathroom counter. I can see it while I’m getting ready in the morning, and several times a day when I come into the bathroom. If you’re having a party, you can move the orchid out to a table as part of your decorations.

They like low light, as they grow on trees (upside down from how you see them in stores, which is why the flowers are clipped to a stick, to keep them up. It’s also why they are planted in bark). This makes them perfect to grow indoors.

You can keep one on your desk at work, and it would be fine on the weekends.


Orchid 4 The Prudent Homemaker

The flowers last for months. It is an elegant flower that stays in bloom.

Given a little care (and mostly neglect!) your orchid can bloom a second time, or even more (you can replant it in fresh bark in a year or two), but even if it doesn’t, you’ve still gotten your money’s worth, far longer than any cut flowers would do.

Have you grown orchids so that you can have fresh flowers every day?

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  1. I didn’t know orchids liked humidity and low light – I have both of those especially in winter as live on Vancouver Island. I may have to get one! I love how they look.

  2. Did you buy the orchid and then transferred it into a different pot? And would this plant need sunlight which i dont get in my house. This seems like a perfect thing for valentines, knowing that i dont have to care too much and i often tend to neglect too 🙁

  3. I won an orchid at a gala that my husband had free tickets to from work in October 2012 and its still alive in February 2013. It is 2 1/2 feet tall and has 20+ flowers at any given time. It was the table centrepiece. It seems happy in the window behind my kitchen sink and I water it on Mondays. I have a brown thumb (unlike you, Brandy!) and I can’t believe I’ve been able to keep an orchid alive! I always thought they were tricky, but they do seem to thrive on neglect! Highly recommended for non-gardeners! Haha.

  4. Hmmm…I wonder what I did wrong with my orchid. My husband gave me one for our anniversary and I thought I was not giving it too much water but I guess I was b/c the roots rotted. I’ll have to try again. They are beautiful. I love the magenta and green orchids.

  5. Now I want one lol I think I will be buying one in the falls, as our school will be transfert in a bran NEW school as of Sept. I will finally have my own office. No more sharing ;)Linda S

  6. What a lovely orchid! A friend of mine has an orchid that has bloomed for many years. She keeps it in a pot in one of her windows. Her elderly mother is one of the best gardeners I know. I gave her a plant that looked dead and lifeless and she cared & planted it & that plant grew so much she had to stake it! One of the things I have learned from her is to find where the plant has “life” and nurture from there. Hope you have a wonderful week! Mrs.Clark

  7. I might have to get an orchid now….you gave a great intro to them..i don’t much like carnations, but started a ton of them from seeds..and surprise, I LOVE THEM IN THE FLOWER BEDS…

  8. I live in one of the most humid places, the MS Delta, and I had never read anything about orchids because I thought they were much pricier that what you paid. You have given inspiration to buy one and see how I do. Thank you

  9. My mother has been into orchids the last 10 or so years. I think she has 3 in her apartment. Sometimes they don’t have any blooms on them and they look just like a stick, but she says wait, right there is where the next blossoms will be. And they do. She also likes African violets. We had windows full of them growing up, always rooting new ones with just a single leaf.

  10. Here in Ohio I have to put the orchid up against the glass in a south facing window to get them to rebloom. (Probably because we get less sunlight) It’s been working for about 4 years. I have bought regular size orchids and also mini-orchids in a 2 inch pot at Kroger (supermarket) for $4.99. The mini-size fits perfectly on my kitchen windowsill.

  11. I keep it near a window that gets only a few hours of filtered afternoon sun. I water it (only a little) about once each week. Other than that, I didn’t do anything. I think they like neglect!

  12. I read this post back In February and a few weeks later Orchids were on sale for $5.00! I bought one. I followed your advice to neglect it a bit and it is still making new buds. It has been constantly blooming and I’m so happy! I have fresh flowers to sooth my soul everyday! When I saw Oxalis go on clearance after March 17th for $2.00 I could not resist I grabbed one that hadn’t been bought because it was just starting to bloom. It is also still blooming and I know after it’s done I can plant it in my garden outside and it will thrive for years to come. Thank you for opening my eyes to affordable fresh flowers.

  13. What a great deal!I wouldn’t plant it outside unless you live near the equator in a tropical zone, though. It is a tropical plant. Just keep it indoors and it may bloom for you again next year.

  14. Hi! I am wondering if you know that: when all those flowers die, you can cut the “stick” just above the fourth node and you may get other flowers from the same stick. I have one orchid just as yours but in magenta and I do that every year. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. By the way, I live in Brazil (Sao Paulo) and I am reading all your posts! Thank you for sharing such good information!

  15. Yes. We bought 3 African violets for about $10 many years ago and we have not gone without flowers since.

  16. So agree Brandy, I bought one the other day and it’s beautiful. Blooms will last and bloom again. Can’t get that with fresh flowers unless you grow them yourself. $10.00

  17. Because I read this post, I picked up a beautiful orchid for $8 in May. I enjoyed continuous blooms into October. Then in November I learned to repot it (you-tube)-finding a bag of orchid potting mix (bark) for $2 at the thrift store. Now it’s January and I have a new flower spike several inches tall! Looking forward to more beautiful blooms. Thanks for suggesting orchids!

  18. They live and bloom outside in Sydney, which is a sub-tropical zone. But don’t let them get sun-burnt – they like dappled shade.

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