Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Growing Orchids In Sydney
Although spring officially begins on the 1st of September in Australia, it has started ten days earlier in our garden with the bloom of the first flower on a arching spray of unopened buds of our neglected Cymbidium orchid plant. It has rusty brown petals with a wonderfully garish and extravagantly sized purple and white lip.
I began interested in growing orchids out of fascination with the delicate beauty of bloom and their native habitats from where they grow, but I think the stage was set by my experiences when I was working as a young forester in the tropical jungle of Papua New Guinea. But my interest waned when I returned to live in Sydney, as I was frustrated of not knowing how to care for them in a different environment and climate change, never knowing when to water, when to fertilize or to keep them indoor or to prevent the winter frost. Just like the orchid, I am originally from the tropics and have yet to learn how to acclimatise in colder climate :). Through the years, I have diminished the lives of many orchid plants and sent them back to their heavenly tropical paradise home in the sky. I gave up in despair, and sure that I hadn't the knack to raise these beauties until now.