Imagine yourself trudging through the snow on the third day in a row of bland, grey skies and whipping winds. You're ready for spring, already! Opening the door, you're glad to be in out of the elements and into the warmth. You're in a warehouse now, rather sparse but organized. You're invited into the next area, but first you need to stand on a special mat that sits in a basin of disinfectant- this company is serious about cleanliness! All you see are plants with lots of green strappy leaves. Looking further, you begin to see color in the distance. As you walk, you realize the immense size of the fully automated greenhouse and before you know it, you are standing in the middle of acres of blooming phaleanopsis orchids, otherwise known as butterfly or moth orchids.
Recently we had the opportunity to visit Green Circle Growers, a greenhouse that specializes, amongst other plants, in growing phalaenopsis orchids. Their orchids are known as Just Add Ice orchids because they advocate simply providing the orchid plant with 3 ice cubes a week, set on the soil to slowly melt. Phals are temperamental when they have too much water- their roots rot.
Tiny starter plants are received...
and planted in packs...
where they remain for weeks until they send out flower spikes.
The plants are then potted individually...
and kept in the greenhouse for months more until the flower spikes open.
Green Circle is adamant about the plants' growing conditions. The greenhouse is immaculate throughout. Their policy is to touch the plants with human hands as little as possible, thereby reducing the possible of exposure to bacteria.
The flower colors were simply beautiful, their range across the board.
I wouldn't have minded one of each!
Thank you, Frank and Elise, for a memorable tour of your impressive facility.
Have you been able to have your phalaenopsis orchids re-bloom at home?
I have not had much luck with this. If you have, please give us some tips!