January Quick Links
Cultivo de orquídeas en Florida mes por mes
Buy Florida Orchid Growing
Buy Florida Vanda Growing
Buy Orchid Territory
January Orchid Events
Progress of the Season
January in Your Orchid Collection
Exciting News!

You can now get Florida Orchid Growing Month by Month on your Kindle!!

Only $9.99 delivered instantly to your Kindle, Iphone or Ipad.

Click here to order.

You can also now order
Cultivo de orqu�deas en Florida mes por mes!

The Spanish language translation of Dr. Motes's smash hit Florida Orchid Growing is now available for order.

Click here to visit the website and order your copy today. 

Tasks for January

1.Water judiciously, only early in the day.

2.Run plants on the dry side to preserve the possibility of using water for cold protection.

3.Check irrigation system in anticipation of cold.

4.Flush excess fertilizer salts from cattleyas and other sympodials.

5.Spray for mites, then, spray again in 7-10 days.

6. Groom plants and flower spikes for the Tamiami Festival.


Florida Orchid GrowingFlorida Orchid Growing Month by Month

What if you could keep your orchid plants healthy and happy (read: blooming!) all year round? Take your orchid growing to the next level with the most comprehensive source on growing orchids in Florida, Florida Orchid Growing Month by Month. Dr. Motes brings over fifty years of experience growing orchids to bear on the problems confronting Florida orchid lovers. A wonderful resource and a great gift for any orchid lover.

Click here to visit our website to buy it.

Regular Price: $20.00 
Our Price: $15.00
S & H: $5.00

Florida Vanda Growing
Florida Vanda Growing Month by Month
Following the runaway success of Florida Orchid Growing Month by Month, Dr. Motes has written a follow up volume that provides even more information about his favorite topics: Vandas! Florida Vanda Growing Month by Month has arrived!

Regular Price: $22.50
Sale Price: $17.50
S & H: $5.00
Orchid Territory
Orchid Territory
The first edition of Orchid Territory, the hilarious romp through an imagined world of orchids very similar to our own, sold out! Luckily, a second edition has arrived.

Click here to visit our website to buy it.

Regular Price: $15.00
Sale Price: $10.00
S & H: $5.00

Motes Orchids will be open from 10AM to 5PM on days when classes are held.

Motes Orchids is located at 25000 SW 162 Ave, that's just south of Coconut Palm Drive (248 St) and SW 162 Ave. Take Turnpike south to US 1 at exit 12, continue south on US 1 to 248St, then right (west) on 248St to 162 Ave then left (south) one block to Motes Orchids. Email us for further information.


 In Your Orchid Collection
V. Kekaseh      


January Orchid Events

Jan. 17-18th. -Tamiami International Orchid Festival, Miami-Dade Fairgrounds Expo Center, 10901 Coral Way (SW 24th St.)

Florida's Winter Orchid Extravaganza, Beautiful displays, Fabulous Benched Show, over 50 Orchid vendors(visit OrchidFestival.com for more info and to place pre-orders), Expert lectures(Schedule in separate email). Follow on twitter @orchidfestival. This is the big one! More to come in later emails.


Jan. 17th. AOS Judging Fla. Caribbean Center

Fairchild Garden 10901Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables 12:30 PM.

January 24th Free Class: Introduction to Orchid Growing,

Motes Orchids 25000 SW 162 Ave, Redland 11:00 AM



Jan. 23-24th- Ft Lauderdale Orchid Show

War Memorial Auditorium 800 N.E. 8th St.



January 31st.- Free Class: Cattleya Growing,

Motes Orchids 25000 SW 162 Ave, Redland 11:00 AM




  Progress of the Season January 2015

After a chilling start December has settle into the pure delight in the air that keeps those tourist dollars flowing. The fairly constant pattern of stalled cold fronts becoming stationary across the peninsula is unusual. In addition to the marvelously moderate but warm temperatures this weather pattern has delivered less rain than normal as the collision of cold and warm air has been less extreme.

            In general our orchids are as happy with this weather as we are. Vandas love the warmth and the swing of day to night temperatures is beneficial to both root and flower production. We need to continue to water them most days and feed them weekly under these conditions but be careful. Although we have had less rain than usual, we have had much more cloud cover due to the stalled fronts. This lack of sunshine has reduced drying potential. Be sure those vandas are really dry before watering and water early in the day as possible.

            The warm, cloudy conditions also mean extra care should be taken not to water dormant genera. The lower drying potential also dictates that sympodial orchids in growth should be watered with less frequency. Test the weight of those cattleyas in pots before watering.

            The higher humidity has helped keep mites at bay but remember they can build rapidly when conditions again become optimal for them. Prophylactic spraying as outlined in Florida Orchid Growing is still recommended. Thrips, too, whilst not at full speed can still be problematic in warmer periods. Scout for them.

            Snails which normally are deep into their long winter naps are out and about. A light application of snail bait after the rain of a passing or stalled cold front might save many beautiful blooms.

            We'll want those blooms in perfect condition for the Tamiami International Orchid Festival Jan. 17 and 18. In addition to th opportunity to show off your prowess as a grower there is a bundle of prize money! $1000 for Grand Champion, $500 for Reserve Champion and $100 each for Best Cattleya, Best Dendrobium, Best Oncidium, Best Phalaenopsis, Best Paphiopedilum, Best Vanda, Best Species and Best Specimen Plant.

New this year is a $500 prize for best Amateur Plant.

To be eligible for these prizes plants must be entered between 12PM and 5 PM Friday January 16th.

If you have not visited Motes Orchids' website now might be a good time to see the unique offerings of vandas available there and nowhere else: www.motesorchids.com . Pre-orders are possible for pickup at the Tamiami Festival if placed before Sunday January 11th.


January in Your Orchid Collection

January Climate Data

Average high: 76.5

Average low: 59.6

Average mean: 68.1

Average rainfall: 1.88"

            January is somewhat like December but in reverse, with each succeeding day bringing longer hours of sunlight until days are long enough that afternoons return at the end of the month with extra sunshine to warm us after the extra sharp cold snaps. January, like December, is cold and dry, in fact even colder and drier. Dry is good, cold can be very bad. We need to accentuate the positive by especially careful watering in January. By keeping our plants as dry as possible and spacing our waterings as far apart as possible, we conserve our potential to use water to protect our plants from the cold, keeping our powder dry, as it were. In January water early, water thoroughly when you do and do so sparingly. The cooler overall temperatures of January are much less dehydrating even to plants which have received less water. Remember, many of our orchids come from seasonally dry and cool climates not so different from South Florida. Many orchids are equipped already to handle the drier cooler conditions of our Florida January. A good strategy is to "top-up" the light watering that our plants receive with the passing showers that each successive cold front brings. This slight additional artificial irrigation may prove to be all the watering that many genera need. Such parsimony with watering preserves the possibility of using water on truly cold nights to warm our plants.

            Water is the only feasible source of heat available to plants grown in the open, under trees, in shade houses or on patios in South Florida. Ground water here (and in most of the rest of the world is about 63 F. (16C). Water out of municipal systems is not far different. On truly cold nights turning on the water can be of great benefit to our plants, provided that they have not been over-watered in the days and weeks preceding, thus inviting the ever present fungi to do more damage than the cold. For this reason as well, in general, orchids are better off dry until temperatures approach frost or freezing. The logic for maintaining plants dry is not only to minimize fungal problems but also because cold air is typically very dry air. If plants are wet in very dry and rapidly moving air say 10 or more MPH, evaporative cooling can take place, chilling our orchids further and faster than they would if dry. When the water goes on it needs to be in heavy volume and it needs to stay on to keep the plants thoroughly bathed in its warmth. Very still air on the other hand, presents a different danger as frost is possible at temperatures higher than is commonly realized. In calm air frost can form at higher elevations and settle in on plants while the surface temperature is only in the upper 30's (4C). The best forecast for nights when the temperature will hover near 40 is a light wind of 2-5 miles per hour. This light wind mixes the warm air near the surface and draws warm from the earth. Clear, cloudless, still nights with bright shining stars elevate the spirit but harbingers frost.

            Forecasts of temperatures below 40 F should stimulate us to action.

If it is not practical to bring all the Phalaenopsis, vandas and hard cane dendrobiums into the house or garage, think of using water to help protect them. Shade cloth or even patio screen like a lacy Mantilla holds in a surprising amount of heat. Under screen, a fine mist head(1/2 gal. per minute) attached to a hose and left running beneath the bench or plant rack will provide several degrees of additional warmth that will often sufficiently temper the chill and ward off any light frost settling in. Growers with swimming pools frequently turn on the re-circulating pump to keep a supply of warm water near the pool's surface where it can add heat to the ambient environment. A few degrees of warmth frequently make all the difference to our sensitive orchids. In more open areas not protected by a permanent irrigation system, an oscillating sprinkler at the end of a garden hose is very effective. These are readily available at Home Depot and garden shops for a few dollars. On frosty nights, start the water at bedtime and let it run until the sun is up. The extra water once or twice in a month will do no harm to orchids that have been properly and judiciously watered the remainder of the month. In fact, these occasions present the opportunity to be sure that excess fertilizer salts have been leached from the pots and medium. A good work can be born of necessity!

            Remember that Himalayan dendrobiums and ''warm growing'' Cymbidium hybrids will positively relish temperatures down to 32F and a light frost is just the ticket for great bloom. Keep the water off these!

            In the drought of January, mites, which affect nearly all genera of orchids, continue to be a serious problem that will only get worse. Mite populations will reach a crescendo in March and April but January is a good time to scotch them. Paphiopedilum and other softly leaved genera are particularly susceptible but no genus is free of them. One theory on why deciduous genera such as Catasetum, Calanthe and others lose their leaves hypothesizes that this totally rids them of mites.

            Being totally rid of mites is a good thing! Sometimes this is easier said than done because mites reproduce with such voluminous speed. Their life cycle from egg to reproductive adult being is as short as twelve days. In order to control mites one must achieve as total a kill of the population as possible. Total control can only be achieved with two successive sprays. After spraying for mites initially, one must spray again in 7 - 10 days. No single spray is totally effective in killing both adults and eggs and a second spraying is necessary to kill any survivors before they can reproduce. Oil as recommended in the December chapter at 1.5 oz per gal followed in7-10 days by soap at the rate of 2 oz per gallon is very effective. These treatments are also quite effective against scale and mealy bugs which thrive on drought as well. Be sure your plants are well watered the day before applying both oil and soap and be sure that you cover thoroughly all leaf surfaces especially the lower ones which are mites favorite hide outs. For those who wish to be more aggressive, the University of Florida IFAS recommended chemicals for mite control are:

Avid 0.15 EC

Kelthane T/O

Mavarik Aquaflow

Talstar Flowable

Always follow label instructions for use. Any of these chemicals can be alternated with the soap or the oil in the 7-10 day cycle.

            Controlling mites pays huge dividends! You'll be surprised at the extra vigor your plants display.