Guest Author - Haidy Ear-Dupuy
As the temperature outside starts to cool, it is time to think about moving your orchids indoor. Start to prepare a sunny location inside your house, making sure there is enough ventilation and away from areas that pets may knock them over.
For many plants what can withstand cooler night temperature, such as the Phalaenopsis and the Cattleyas, you can keep them out as long as the night temperature keep in the 50s and 40s degree Fahrenheit. As long as the temperature does not dip below 40s Fahrenheit, you can keep them outdoor until you start to see spikes. Cymbidiums also like to stay in cooler temperatures and can be kept outdoor longer in the Fall. Pay close attention to the weather forecast to make sure that there is no freezing nights.
Your warm growing orchids should be moved indoor first. Make sure to clean the pots, trip off dead leaves, and spray for insects and unwanted pests before moving them into the house. If you currently have other house plants in the same location, keep your newly moved plant some distance apart so that you can observe and verify that there are no pests or disease infection on the new arrivals into the house. Orchids such as the Oncidiums and Dendrobiums should be the first to go into the house. Be sure not to water them too often once they are inside the house, since the lack of air circulation may tend to have mold growing on the medium.
To clean your pots and get rid of unwanted pests, you can dip your plants into soapy solution or spray insecticidal soap over the plant after thoroughly soaking them with water. By submerging the plants into soapy water, using dishwashing detergent or laundry detergent, unwanted insects or slugs would crawl out of the pot. After making sure all pests escape, you can rinse them with clean water. You can do this several times if you are not sure whether or not you’ve rid the plant of the pests the first time.
Having a schedule for the gradual move of your plants from outside back to inside the house is a good idea, especially, when you have many pots to care for and move around from your yard into your house. With a little bit of planning, transitioning your plants back into the house for the winter season can be enjoyable.