I heard that I can use ice cubes to water my orchid. Is that true?

It’s pretty convenient to be able to leave an ice cube on your orchid without moving it around to water. However, personally, it’s not something that I would recommend for a long term solution.

I always tell people to flush the medium when watering their orchids, meaning that pour water on the potting material until it’s thoroughly drenched. That way, the accumulated salt and material can be flushed out, and you can also ensure that the potting material is equally wet.

Watering with an ice cube has the opposite effect. You are just wetting the top of the potting material. What I found is that while the coldness doesn’t negatively impact the health of the orchid, the shallow watering is really the culprit.

Nevertheless, ice cube has a secondary, and maybe desirable effect. Many orchids require a decisively drop of temperature (10 degree F or more) to initiate flower spikes. Therefore, by putting several ice cubes on the medium, you may be able to fool the plant to believe that the temperature is really dropping.

There are proponent and opponent of the ice cube treatment, whether for the purpose of watering or initiating flowers. It works for me sometimes, but again, I wouldn’t use it as a sole way to hydrate my orchids.

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