Cymbidium flowers last for several months and they typically bloom early in the year to brighten a winter day. They are hardy enough to withstand a few degrees of frost. Cymbidiums are grown outdoors in many parts of the country.
LIGHT – This is the single most important factor for good growth. Lack of light is the most common reason for a blooming size plant to fail to produce flowers. These plants like as much light as possible without burning their leaves.
TEMPERATURE – Cymbidium orchids will tolerate extremes but remember a good rule of thumb is if you are comfortable in the growing area, then your plants are going to be comfortable, too. Daytime temperatures should be kept below 86 degrees. Night temps should be between 40 – 65 degrees. Plants prefer the lower end of these temperature ranges during bud formation and flowering. All orchid flowers last longer if kept on the cooler side.
WATER – A hot, wet summer is fine as most cymbidiums originate from monsoon areas. A bit dryer during the cool winter season is preferred. The best way to judge water needs is simply to pick your plant up and water according to weight. A dry plant will feel very light.
HUMIDITY – Adjust humidity by seasons. Higher in the summer growing months, around 50-70%, and lower in the winter, around 40-50%.
AIR MOVEMENT – It is necessary to the good culture of all orchids to have good air circulation. Proper ventilation reduces the chance for disease and helps flowers to last longer in good condition.
FERTILIZER – Feeding is largely dictated by seasons. More fertilizer with higher levels of nitrogen during the summer months and a small amount of balanced fertilizer during cooler months.
POTTING – Should be done at least every two years. Cymbidiums prefer a more moist medium than most orchids. A mix used for paphiopedilums or seedlings will usually work just fine.
Cymbidium orchids have an oriental look with their grass-like leaves and the flowers high above the foliage. Flowers have excellent, lasting qualities and come in every color but blue.