Question and Answer

 From: USA
Date sent: Wed, 12 Dec 2001
Subject: cattleya

I am enjoying your site on the net very much.

ihave many cattleyas and laelias on slabs, could you suggest how often to water during winter?

and also how do I water them?

thanks for your help,

Sincerely Jim
Thanks fur your comments

Watering during the winter can be difficult to assess as the temperature, humidity and air movement can have a significant effect.
Generally the plants should be allowed to dry out and then watered. You can spray (mist) the plants but often soaking the plants in a container to really wet the mount may be best, and then allow to dry. Do this early in the morning, as the foliage must be dry by nightfall to prevents rots. Choose a warm day; cold wet conditions are always fatal.
Many media are hard to we once they are really dry, and if you spray you will have to do this several times so that the media can absorb the moisture. Most catleyas and laelias go through a wet dry cycle, so you will have to observe. If the plant pseudobulbs start to shrivel, then you have dried too much.
During the winter watering once or perhaps twice a week should be appropriate, but because conditions can vary so much no fixed recommendation can be given - look at your plants and allow the media to dry and then water again. Do not dry to aridity, but certainly the surface portion of the mount must be allowed to dry.

I hope these comments assist

Site established 9th May 1998