Basic orchid care essentials are about sunlight and water. However, for orchid plants to really perform well and bloom vigorously, nourishment with fertilizers becomes essential. For orchid growers (such as Toh Garden), fertilizing is a MUST, as only flowering plants are commercially viable. Of course, for private collectors, fertilizing is really optional – but will be recommended if one is keen to devote more.
First and foremost, inorganic fertilizers are the preferred type of feed for orchid plants. For orchid plants to grow well and flower vigorously, they need specific elements in their diet. Most inorganic fertilizers for orchids comprise of 3 main elements: nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium in varied ratios, (Otherwise, known to be NPK fertilizers, where N, P and K are the codes annotating these elements) and small amounts of trace elements. Fertilizing is applied twice weekly in Toh Garden. However, as a rule of thumb, the more regular, the better – just take note to dilute the fertilizer concentration. The foliar fertilizer that Toh Garden utilizes are also available for retail sales (NPK63 for healthy growth & NPK67 for improved flowering). Of course, slow-release fertilizes can also be used as a form of supplement to the Orchid’s nutrition needs.
In any case, fertilizing regimes differs between different nurseries – for example: fertilizing once or twice a month; rather than as regularly as possible. This is a matter of different perspectives, so feel free to carry out trials to ascertain the most optimal regime for your plants.
(Distributed by Toh Garden) Ez-Gro NPK63 & 67 – recommended usage
Dissolve half ~ one teaspoon (2.5 ~ 5 grams) of NPK fertilizer to 1 litre of water. Feed fertilizer solution to orchid plants’ roots. Bear in mind, not to water the plants on days of fertilizing, otherwise it will be doubling their fluid intake. Although NPK67 improves the quality and size of flowers, prolonged usage of NPK67 alone will result in stunted plant growth. The best way to go will be using NPK63 for 2~ 3 weeks; followed by 1 week usage of NPK67 or only switching to NPK67 prior / during the flowering season. Younger plants would require mainly NPK63 for vegetative growth. Otherwise, a pure diet of NPK63 would suffice in boosting the plant’s health and growth, laying good foundations for flowering. More often than not, NPK67 is treated as fertilizer that improves flowering frequency. This conception is true to some extent only, as the frequency of flowering depends on many factors such as the environment, general plant health and its inborn seasonal cycle. Bearing in mind, what NPK67 significantly improve is the quality (longer stalks / robust blooms) of the flower.