Skip to content

Monkey orchid is a unique decoration for your home: here you will learn how to care for it properly

Orchids are one of the most numerous families of flowers on earth, with 25,000 to 30,000 different species. The flowers of these unique plants have a variety of shapes, and one species that grows in South America even resembles a monkey. Dracula simia, also known as monkey orchid, is native to southeastern Ecuador. It thrives in the country’s rainforests and is one of at least 10,000 orchid species found in the tropics. Its long-tailed, reddish-brown flowers have a pair of dot-shaped “eyes” that bear a striking resemblance to the face of a capuchin monkey, making it a real attraction to the eye.

Monkey orchid is a unique decoration for your home

The monkey face orchid not only looks fascinating, but also smells wonderful. When it blooms, and it does all year round, it smells like ripe oranges. The monkey orchid is a great decoration for your home if you know how to care for it, and in this article, we will introduce you to just that.

How to grow and care for monkey orchid at home

Dracula Simia not only looks fascinating, but also smells wonderful

Repotting considerations: when choosing a container for Dracula Simia, choose a pot that other orchids will like. Make sure the roots have enough room to spread out. An essential part of a good pot is drainage holes. These holes allow excess water to escape, which prevents root rot problems.

Soil and light preferences

Dracula Simia thrive in shady conditions

Soil: In their natural habitats in Ecuador, Dracula Simia do not grow in soil. Rather, they grow on other plants. They do not injure these plants, but simply use them for structural support. If you grow a monkey orchid at home, you probably won’t grow it on another plant. Instead, you will use a mix that is well suited for these orchids.

A potting soil designed specifically for orchids is a good choice. These are well-drained mixes that contain a lot of chunky material. If you want to make your own mix, mix 3/4 bark chips with 1/4 peat moss.

The maximum temperature that a monkey orchid can tolerate is 21 degrees Celsius

Light: Since these orchids are tropical plants, you might think they love a lot of light. However, that is not the case! Dracula Simia thrive in shady conditions that mimic the understory forest habitat. They suffer when exposed to bright light or even too much indirect light. It is best to keep the monkey face orchid in a location that receives only a few hours of indirect light each day. The inside of your home is usually a good location for these plants.

Temperature and Humidity Preferences

Dracula plant suffers from many of the same problems as other orchids

Temperature: Unlike many other houseplants, Dracula plants prefer cool temperatures. This makes sense since these plants are native to the high altitudes of Ecuador. The maximum temperature these can tolerate is 21 degrees Celsius. However, they do much better at temperatures between 10 and 15 degrees Celsius. Like most houseplants, monkey orchid should be protected from hot and cold drafts. Do not place them near heating or cooling vents.

Dracula Simia grow well in high humidity conditions

Humidity: These plants grow well in high humidity. If their environment is a little dry, they suffer. The best way to increase the humidity in a room is to use a humidifier. If you want to grow these temperamental species, a humidifier is a good investment. High humidity levels pose a risk of mold. To prevent fungal diseases, use a fan for better air circulation.

When and how to water Dracula orchids.

Unlike many other houseplants, Dracula plants prefer cool temperatures.

Monkeyhead orchids do not have water storage organs called pseudobulbs. For this reason, they cannot store large amounts of water to use during drought. They can go without water for a few weeks, but develop best when watered regularly. It is advisable to water the monkey orchid every one to two weeks. If you notice signs of root rot or other fungal problems, you should reduce the frequency of watering.

When watering, make sure that excess water is drained through the drainage holes. If this water collects in a saucer, empty it so the plant does not absorb it again.

Fertilizing and pruning the monkey orchid.

Although Dracula Simia is difficult to care for, it does not require complicated pruning

Fertilizing: Monkeyhead orchids benefit from fertilization. It’s best to use a balanced houseplant fertilizer that you dilute to half strength. Fertilize your plant once every two weeks from spring through fall. Reduce fertilization to once a month during the winter.

To learn how to fertilize orchids with home remedies, click here !

It is advisable to water the monkey orchid every one to two weeks

Pruning and supporting: Although the monkey orchid is difficult to care for, it does not require complicated pruning. As soon as a flower stalk dies, you can carefully cut it back. That’s all the pruning this plant requires.

How to make orchids bloom, find out here !

Diseases and their treatment

Because monkeyhead orchid lives in the shade, it is especially susceptible to root rot

The Dracula plant suffers from many of the same problems as other orchids. Keep an eye out for the following problems.

Mealybugs: If you notice that your monkey orchid looks like it’s covered in cotton, you’re probably dealing with mealybugs. These soft-bodied insects suck out plant juices, which weakens the plant and makes it susceptible to disease. You can collect a small number of mealybugs by hand and place them in soapy water. Another option is to spray the pests with insecticidal soap or neem oil.

How to grow and care for monkey orchid at home

Aphids: Aphids are another type of sucking insect with a soft body structure. They suck the plant sap and spread disease as they feed. If you have a small infestation, you can squash them with your fingers. For a larger infestation of aphids, spray them with neem oil or insecticidal soap. You may need to repeat applications to kill all pests.

Monkeyhead orchids benefit from fertilization

Root rot: Because these plants live in shade, they are especially susceptible to root rot. Overwatering is the most common cause of this. If you notice your orchid yellowing or wilting, it could be dealing with root rot. Muddy roots are a sure sign of rot. If you notice this problem, you should repot your monkey orchid in fresh soil. Take the plant out and carefully cut off any affected roots.

Shake off the old soil and repot your orchid into fresh potting soil. To prevent further root rot, reduce the amount of water you use. Also, make sure the pot has adequate drainage holes.

For more features and tips to combat orchid damage, click here !