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Family that includes about fifty species of orchids, mostly terricolous, originating in Africa, Asia, Australia and the islands of the Pacific Ocean. It has fleshy pseudobulbs that are usually gathered in large groups, the leaves are long and very decorative, light green in color, in spring it produces a long stem at the end of which numerous flowers of considerable size bloom, of white, green, yellow or pink color. The outer petals are narrow and long, facing upwards, from the base of which a trilobate labellum departs, usually of contrasting color, rolled up into a cylindrical shape, often with a wavy end and a darker color.
This orchid loves the shaded positions, it adapts well both in positions that are not very bright or in very bright places, the important thing is to keep it away from the direct rays of the sun that could burn flowers and leaves. It loves the temperate climate, with minimum temperatures around 10 ° C, although it can withstand lower temperatures for short periods; in places where the winter is particularly mild you can try to cultivate it in the garden, in the open ground, taking care in any case to repair it during the winter and to choose particularly rustic species.
The phaius orchids need abundant amounts of water, especially in the period from March to October, therefore it is advisable to water them every week, often checking the soil to prevent them from drying too much between one watering and another; avoid stagnant water that could cause root rot. It is advisable to be very careful never to wet the leaves and flowers, which would be irreparably stained. Provide fertilizer for orchids every week, mixed with the water of the sprinklers.
One of the fundamental aspects to take into consideration when deciding to cultivate an orchid is the choice of soil. The soil is the main source of plant support and for this reason it is good to opt for a substrate that is able to respond to the specific needs of the plant. To cultivate the phaius orchid, it is good to choose a good balanced soil, very soft and drained; it is advisable to place a coarse material on the bottom of the vessel in order to increase drainage; furthermore it is advisable to add to the soil of perlite, sand and sphagnum to lighten and air the soil. All these attentions will allow the phaius orchid to grow optimally. These orchids usually need to be repotted every 2-3 years, to allow a luxuriant growth and guarantee a good flowering.
The multiplication of phaius occurs by division of the tufts of rhizomes, taking care to leave some roots in each portion produced. At the end of flowering it is also possible to root the floral stem, placing it in a shady and damp place, in a plastic bag filled with sand.
Phaius: Pests and diseases
Now let's see what diseases and pests the plant could develop.
These orchids are often hit by the cochineal and often also by the aphids, if they are cultivated outside also pay attention to the slugs and the oziorrinco.