Guide to Pollinating Orchids

Guide to Pollinating Orchids

Orchids are complex creatures. They are monoecious meaning they are bi-sexual beings consisting of male and female reproductive organs on them.  Orchids have columns which meets at the end of the stem of an orchid. The column is what consists of the male and female reproductive organs. 

So with orchids, you get two types of ways they attract insects. One type of orchid has a sweet nectar which the insects naturally come to feed on. The other tope of orchid has a promise of a sweet nectar. Meaning it gives off the appearance or smell of containing sweet nectar but ironically has none. 

Now  that we know different parts of orchids, and how they attract insects, let's get into how they pollinate on their own. House orchids cannot be pollinated naturally.

 column orchid

Step 1: Make sure you have a clean area to work on.

Step 2: Select an instrument to use to work on pollinating such as a toothpick since the sharp end works easily and the pollen attaches to it rather quickly. 

Step 3: Now-carefully hold the flower in your hand and slowly hook the anther with the instrument. The anther is found at the apex of the column. The cap should fly off when you do this. Carefully place instrument with attached anther on the clean working area. 

Step 4: Carefully remove pollen sac from the anther. The pollen should stick to the instrument. 

Step 5: Time to place the pollen inside the column. You need to place it in a different flower to the one you took the pollen from. It can be on the same plant, just use a different flower. Then you can use pollen from the second flower and fertilize the first.

Move the pollen on the tip of your instrument to the opening of the Column. The opening is just under where the Anther Cap was. You will see small fang-like structures over the opening, which is usually what helps the flower rake the pollen off the insect.

The pollen should move from your instrument to the inside of the column easily, as there is a sticky substance inside the column too.Try and push the pollen in as far as possible without hurting the column. The column will push it down further.

And there you have it! You have successfully pollinated the orchid flower. Now you just need to wait to see if it has successfully fertilized.