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 ORCHID FOOD In their native habitat, orchids scavenge nutrients from whatever happens to be nearby: decomposing leaves, bird or animal droppings, or minerals borne in rainwater. You can help your orchid to grow faster and bloom sooner by feeding it the right fertilizers. Look for products that contain nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K), along with trace elements such as iron. Potassium (K) is mainly responsible for the control of flower, and fruit development. Phosphorous (P) for flower production, and Nitrogen (N) for healthy vegetative growth. The amount of feeding depends on the plant concerned, the time of year and general health of the plant. Investigations have shown that feeding should begin with more Nitrogen just when the new shoots are showing, more Phosphorous and Potassium being necessary towards the end of the season. THINGS TO CONSIDER: Orchids growing in bark need more nitrogen than either phosphorus or potassium (in proportions of 30-10-10). This is because the bark is decayed by bacteria that use a large amount of nitrogen, leaving very little for the plant. Therefore, the most important step to remember when feeding your orchid is to correctly identify the type of fertilizer you should be using. Beautiful Orchids has five different orchid foods available from our online catalog. Before feeding your orchid, always read and follow the directions carefully.
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