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How Do You Fertilize Orchids? (The Best Nutrient Ratio)

Orchids are the favorite ornamental plant of many people due to their elegant beauty. In order for your orchids to bloom abundantly and beautifully, it is important to provide them with enough nutrients. How do you fertilize orchids?

Your orchids should be fed weekly during their growing time with diluted fertilizer. Also, remember to water them before fertilizing. You can nourish your orchids with either artificial or homemade fertilizers. Today, let’s learn more about orchid fertilization with Swipe Garden.

How Do You Fertilize Your Orchids?

You can use natural ingredients to fertilize your orchids in a 20-20-20 ratio. Artificial fertilizers are convenient, but they may contain harmful chemicals for your orchids. Natural fertilization is beneficial for your plants, your budget, and the environment. Some popular natural orchid plant manures are eggshells, dried chicken bones, milk, molasses, etc.

Orchids can tolerate being watered with ice cubes. We will provide some recipes to make these manures at home later in this post. You can naturally fertilize your orchid plant one or two times per month during the growing season.

How do I care for Phalaenopsis orchids? Fertilize your Phalaenopsis orchids every one to two weeks when they are actively growing and every three to four weeks when they are blooming or in winter. The fertilizing orchids and potting mix are enough to keep the Phalaenopsis orchid plant alive and healthy.

When Should You Feed Orchids?

Orchids need nutrients to grow, so you should feed them properly. The best time to start fertilizing is after your orchid has finished blooming.

Expert orchid growers typically feed their plants once a week. Some orchid growers get great results using organic and inorganic orchid fertilizers together. The recommended orchid fertilizers have a balanced ratio of phosphorus, nitrogen, and potassium, such as 20-20-20. During the growing season of this plant, you should fertilize it lightly.

During this time, the fertilizer solution should be diluted to a concentration of 50% of the recommended dosage. Before applying the orchid fertilizer solution, remember to moisten the soil. In this way, you can protect your orchid from burning roots.

How Do You Make Homemade Orchid Fertilizers?

Now let’s move on to some natural fertilizer recipes for orchid plants. The ingredients used in these recipes are easy to find in your home.

Ground eggshells

Ground eggshells make an ideal natural fertilizer. These nutrients are essential for your precious flower plants to thrive.

Here are the steps to make manure from eggshells:

  • Boil a liter of water.
  • Clean 12 eggshells and grind them well.
  • Add the ground eggshells to the boiling water and turn off the heat source.
  • Let the eggshells sit in water overnight.
  • Pour the eggshell mixture into a spray bottle through a strainer.

Spraying your plants with this solution every two weeks will help provide them with more potassium and calcium.

Dried chicken bones

Chicken bones are another readily available source of calcium and magnesium for plants. You can follow the recipe below to make fertilizer from chicken bones.

  • Rinse and dry the chicken bones in the sun for 2–3 days.
  • Crush the bones into sand-like crumbs.
  • Put the crushed bones into a large bowl.
  • Drop some green tea leaves into the bone’s bowl to add nitrogen.
  • Mix the bones and tea leaves with milk and a teaspoon of molasses.
  • Pour some rice cooking water into the mixture and stir well.

You can apply this chicken bone mixture to your orchids once a month as a natural fertilizer.

Simple liquid fertilizers

To fertilize your orchids, you can make a solution using one part cow’s milk and three parts water. Another choice is a molasses solution made with one teaspoon of molasses and one liter of water.

How Do You Get An Orchid To Bloom Again?

After the last flower has fallen, your orchid will enter a dormant period that lasts about 6–9 months. It needs proper care during this time to be ready to rebloom. Follow the steps below to encourage your orchid to bloom again.

  • Cut your orchid’s flower stalk at the base if it has already turned brown. If it’s still green, trim it off just above a node.
  • Water each orchid with three ice cubes once a week, or use the ice cube watering method occasionally.
  • Feed the plant with the fertilizer solution at a 50% concentration every two weeks, and continue to water it with ice cubes as needed.
  • Ensure that your plant gets a lot of sunlight during the day. At night, you can move it to a cold spot. The temperature change will stimulate the plant to bloom.
  • When you see orchid roots with a mitten-like head sprouting, it is a sign that the plant is about to flower again.


Hopefully, through this post, you have learned how to nourish your orchids with fertilizers. Proper fertilization will help this plant thrive and produce more blooms. It’s also interesting to make natural manure for your flowering plants by yourself. Thank you for following this post!

Kelly Lawrence

Kelly Lawrence

Kelly Lawrence is the CEO of Swipe Garden. Over 10 years in the writing and passion for gardening, she brings a wealth of expertise and creativity to the world of gardening. Kelly Lawrence has cultivated a community of plant lovers, making gardening accessible and enjoyable for all.