Transplanting Orchids

You may have wondered how to go about transplanting orchids if you've ever wanted to move a terrestrial orchid from one part of your flower garden to another. The process is similar to repotting orchids in pots, but if you're moving terrestrial orchids from place to place in your flower garden, you should also be careful not to damage the roots, and be aware of a few other things. Learning how to plant orchids isn't difficult, fortunately.

First, prepare the place where you intend to move the plant; this usually involves some soil amendment, so that the plant will be in a potting mix suitable for terrestrial orchids. For orchids that grow in bogs in the wild, you might want to follow the tips I give for certain cold hardy orchids.

The next step is to dig the orchid out of its current location. Some orchids are more tolerant of this than others; for example, a Pleione won't mind being dug up once it's gone dormant for the year. For most orchids, however, they hate having their root systems damaged. This is especially true for Cypripediums. So you'll want to be very careful! You may want to dig a really big, wide hole, then shake off excess potting medium until you have a good view of the root system.

You should remove all the potting mix before planting orchids in their new spot. Then cut off any dead roots. (Use a sterile cutting tool to avoid spreading orchid diseases such as bacterial infections and plant viruses.)

Finally, put the plant in its new location, covering its roots and burying the plant's base to the same depth it was at before. Water it in thoroughly.

You may want to take measures to provide some extra shade while the orchid adapts to its new location.

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