Most orchids bloom

once a year, but if they are really happy, they may bloom more often. If you want an orchid that blooms during a particular season, the best bet is to purchase a plant that is in bloom at that time.

Are orchids difficult to grow? Many of them are. In fact, some are almost impossible to keep alive, much less bring into bloom—even for professional growers. But there are dozens of varieties of orchids, and hundreds of hybrids, that are perfectly happy growing on a sunny windowsill or under lights.

For your best crack at success, start by choosing one of the less fussy varieties that is adapted to the type of growing conditions you can provide. Buy the most mature plant you can afford (young plants are much more difficult to please), and, if possible, buy it in bloom, so you’ll know what you’re striving for.