Vanilla planifolia : Vanilla plant
- Family : Orchidaceae
- Origin: Mexico
- Height in its natural environment : 20 m
- Hardiness : 16°C
- Flower colour : yellow
Height : about 10 / 20 cm
Description of the plant
The only orchid we offer is the famous Vanilla plant.
This plant is epiphytic, which means that it grows on other plants, but without harming them: it is therefore necessary to install a fairly fibrous stake where it can climb naturally by emitting numerous aerial roots that will cling to it. We offer you the beautiful green 'planifolia', as well as the variety 'variegata' with its decorative two-coloured leaves, variegated with yellow and green.
After 4 to 5 years, it will give you the famous vanilla pods after hand fertilisation of the flowers - vanilla used as a delicious spice, but also against male sexual dysfunction.
In short, this vanilla can only do you good!
Also known as : West Indian vanilla
When you receive your plant, repot it in a pot slightly larger than the bucket, which must be well pierced. Avoid pot covers which prevent residual water from draining away and encourage fungal diseases. Choose a fine potting soil, ideally with added perlite or sand to lighten the substrate (do not use garden soil or acidic soil such as heather). Then plan two repottings per year (spring and autumn), gradually increasing the size of the pot and adapting it to the size of the root network (the roots must have room, but not too much as the plant must be able to dry out its substrate between waterings). This avoids having to add fertilizer, which always risks burning the fragile roots of the plants and making the plant wither as soon as the fertilizer is stopped.
Moderate watering: watering should be copious (the whole root ball should be wet), but wait until the substrate has dried deeply before watering again (you can stick your finger in the soil: as long as you feel moisture, do not water). Your plant will recover better from a lack of water than from an excess of water. Always water at the base of the plant, and do not mist it, because stagnant water in the armpit of the leaves favors cryptogamic diseases. If your atmosphere is too dry, put bowls of water nearby (above radiators for example), so that evaporation humidifies the air.
For an indoor planting
A true houseplant, place it in a warm and bright place, but avoid direct sun.
For an outdoor planting
This plant is not frost and/or cold resistant and should not be planted outside except in limited parts of Southern Europe.
Our plants are grown naturally, without chemical fertilizers, so we advise you to repot them regularly (twice a year) rather than adding fertilizer.
In case of pest attack
If your plants are under attack by aphids or other pests, the best way to control them is by hand. Change their soil, remove as many undesirables as possible by hand and then shower your plants with a strong stream of water to eliminate any eggs that may be present. Spray them (insist on the underside of the leaves) with liquid black soap diluted in water. Repeat the operation several times at a few days interval. Take them outside in good weather, rain, sun and wind will kill most of the aggressors!