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Several Orchids Growing Spikes
By CambriaWhat at 2014-08-31 21:50
Suddenly, after months of summer growth, several plants have switched into 'flowering mode'.

Oncidium Sharry Baby, Bulbophyllum medusæ, and Vanda Robert's Delight all have visible spikes.

While not quite visible yet, Paphiopedilum Odette's Vision will soon be sending a bud out of the center of its newly matured growth.

Zygopetalum Bright Imagination has one new growth developing, and I a

New growth on many orchids
By CambriaWhat at 2014-07-31 03:35
For some reason, be it the unusually cool temperatures or the gradually shortening days, several of the orchids are showing new root growth:

The Vanda division is sprouting four new roots from old, shriveled roots as well as from the main stem;
Speckled Spire 'Whisp' is showing a real flush of new roots at the bases of two maturing growths;
Jungle Monarch is growing several roots out from its root ball;
Cymbidium Beauty Fred was repotted last week—removal from its pot revealed wonderful root growth all around;
The Cattleya rex seedlings are sprouting new roots as well as new growth here and there;
Zygopetalum has been working on a new growth for about a month now;
Paph Odette's Vision was repotted recently and roots have already grown out of the bottom of the new pot;
Bulbo medusæ is sprouting new roots from a maturing pseudobulb.

Recent acquisitions include Brassia Spider's Gold 'The Orchid Works', Paph Prime Child, and Bulbophyllum echinolabium. All arrived with new growth. Unfortunately, upon repotting, I broke the new growth off the Prime Child. Other annoying news is that something found the new growths of the echinolabium to be particularly appetizing, and ate an ugly chunk from one new leaf. The Cattleya rex seedlings have become victim to some creature that is digging into the sphagnum moss and tearing out the plants in the process. I suspect it is a bird, as I witnessed a sparrow the other day giving itself a dirt bath in the small pot where a jade plant is growing. The seedlings will need to be protected, or they will likely be torn out and killed.

Last weekend, I found a group of rescue Phals at the big box store: $3 each for large plants, and $0.50 for minis. It was an offer I couldn't refuse—I left with four large and two minis for less than the regular cost of one large plant. They have all been cleaned up and repotted in fresh medium. One of the minis is in intensive care as it only has one root and shrivelled leaves. Hope the best for the little thing.

The State of My Orchids Today
By CambriaWhat at 2014-07-14 09:19
Phalænopses: The blooms on the normal white one are beginning to fade and drop off. No surprise, especially in this heat. The sickly white one is still sickly. Its growth is very slow, and it is losing another leaf. The rescued pink one is starting to take to its mount, with around 10 new roots slowly making their way to the hickory bark. A large, new leaf is developing, and another one seems to be following.

Vanda: This plant was the best birthday present I could have received. It is huge and in bloom with large, purple flowers. After a few days debating on whether or not to separate the large, main stem from the smaller branching stems, today I got out the loppers and removed as much of the larger stem as possible. I was able to salvage several good, thick roots, and two keikis are currently pushing their way out of the bottom of the cutting. I sprayed both cut areas with insecticide/fungicide. It is now hanging in its own basket.

Bulbophyllum: The medusæ's leaves look great. The four growths that the plant arrived with have matured into leaves, and another growth has recently started. The roots bother me. I don't see evidence of root growth anywhere. The plant is not placed in a nice way in its basket because it was previously mounted and had to be more or less crammed in the basket the best way I could figure. That means some leaves are growing downward and some are floating out in the air.

Oncidiums: The noid has two new growths and new roots forming here and there. The only thing is, roots don't seem to get very far once they've started growing. I am a bit suspicious that the lava rock is holding on to too many chemicals for the roots to handle. The Speckled Spire is struggling, but still seems to be making progress. An entire backbulb was found to be mushy and was removed. Since then, the growth that was on the plant when it arrived has started maturing, as the pseudobulb becomes more visible. The new growth seems to be progressing but there are some discolored spots on the new leaves, possibly from insects, hopefully not from anything worse.

Paphiopedilum Odette's Vision: The lateral petals were found drooping today, which means it is just a few days from falling off. It had a nice little run considering the heat and the insects eating away half the flower. It has a new growth coming along very nicely and new roots as well.

Zygopetalum: Started a thread the other day to watch this one. A new growth is starting to take off. I had been keeping it very wet, so haven't watered it very much this week. Then of course it rained tonight. Fingers crossed for flowers by fall.

Cymbidium Beauty Fred: I'm especially pleased to report the beginning of a new bulb and new root growth. This one may need repotting soon.

Cattleya rex seedlings: I have backed off on water, stopped fertilizing, and increased their light. There look to be signs of renewed growth, like new green buds on the rhizome or roots, but these seedlings still seem to be fighting an uphill battle. Hopefully I will find their sweet spot before I lose too many. I have already lost a few of the very small ones.

My Brand new Hula Skirt Orchid Plant
By Lynda Kyse at 2014-06-16 16:34
I am Lynda I live in Davie, Florida. I am a hobby Orchid owner land love to take care of my nearing 50 plants. I have some orchids that are over 45 years old in my possession. I have been recently adding to my collection and have purchased a Hula Skirt orchid plant from the redlands orchid show. It was in bloom and has a new spike coming up on it that will bloom probably within the week.

New additions...
By StellaMaris at 2014-06-02 17:54
TOS Annual Picnic yesterday at Norfolk Botanical Gardens; beautiful day.

One of our members, Mr. Peter Breed, brought some stunning orchids in beautiful glass vases, including an absolutely gorgous v. Pachara Delight. I don't know how old it is, but it is in bloom now, 2 spikes, with amazing cyan blue flowers. I'll include some photos of it and the others later this week.

Outside Under the Willow Tree
By CambriaWhat at 2014-05-07 03:08
I have taken 3 orchids outside and put them under a willow tree for the summer:

One sickly Phal noid,
An Oncidium Speckled Spire,
and a Bulbo medusæ.

The first two are sitting on a column and a small table, and the Bulbo is hanging from a branch in its basket.

The plan is to water them every morning before work. The hose water is cold, but I hope it will be less of a shock in the cool morning temps.

I was a little worried about bugs getting in them, but today when I inspected the Oncidium, there were spiders that had already moved into lots of the nooks and crannies of the plant. So maybe the bad bugs will be held off.

It has kindof been a dream for me to get orchids to grow outside, so this will be the big test.

Update
By CambriaWhat at 2014-05-06 03:14
Much has changed.

I have built up a small collection in a couple of months, buying most of the plants on eBay, with good results so far.

Two white NOID Phalaenopses: Purchased for half off at K-Mart the week after Valentine's Day. Very much 'rescue' orchids. One is growing several new roots as well as 7 buds which have popped up after the original flowers died off. The other plant has lost a leaf, taking it down to four, and, although its spike started to grow a branch, I cut it off at the base to try and redirect its energy back into growth. It is sprouting a couple of new roots but they are growing very slowly. I am experimenting on it by putting it outside under a willow tree. It seemed to be getting just a bit too much light this afternoon as the leaves too warm, but an hour later it was in the shadows. It should probably be moved to a slightly more shaded spot before it fries.

Cypripedium Kentucky Maxi: Came as a beautiful set of healthy roots with 5 growths. Planted in clay pellets and leaf litter, watered carefully, and gave good filtered light, and the plant has struggled. It did flower but they were stunted and deformed. I don't know what the problem was, but the black leaf tips make me wonder if potting media was the issue. I have pulled it out of the clay balls and planted it in a bed outside made of peat moss and sand. Maybe it will fare better out there.

Cattleya rex seedlings: It's been a bit of a roller coaster. I recently moved them up out of the basement into the sunroom where it is warmer. However, I began watering them a bit carelessly (using tap water with some fertilizer thrown in) and it seems there are now reddish-brown places on their roots. So I've switched back to distilled and am allowing them to dry a bit more now than before. They are all showing lots of new root growth but it is slower than I would like to see.

Oncidium Speckled Spire: This plant is producing new growths and seems to like having been potted up in lava rock in a plastic pot. As it seemed fairly happy, I decided to experiment on it by putting it outside under the willow tree. The light is bright but filtered, and it *should* grow happily there this summer—if the bugs don't destroy it first.

Oncidium Jungle Monarch: Bought this little guy in bud from eBay and he bloomed out great. Already showing a new growth, I am going to repot his crowded roots into a big basket of lava rock, set him outside, and let him go wild. Specimen-sized plants are cool as can be.

Bulbophyllum medusæ: My first step into the bizarre world of the Bulbophyllums. I always thought it would be a B. echinolabium, but when I saw this large plant advertised on eBay for a decent price, I had to grab it. It came mounted with leaves going everywhere, but I soaked it in water, slid it off the mount, and potted it up in a big basket of lava rock and sphagnum. Now it's under the lights with the Cattleyas, but I'd like to move it outside. Again, I have no idea what bugs are out there waiting to chew it to pieces, but once I find a place I think it will be relatively safe, out it goes.

In the mail - Waiting on a Zygo, Paph, and Cym I bought on offer today. Hitting lots of different genera right now, maybe later I'll focus more on some special individuals.

Surviving ny winter cold and dark
By Janegrace at 2014-03-28 10:58
Finally got orchids to make it through a ny winter. It was a bad one too. My growing area has overhead lights and natural light. I kept the electric heat at 70 and dropped it a few degrees toward the end of march at night.
I have new growth on every orchid.
In a moment of madness I had bought 7 orchids even though I knew I was moving .

Greetings from OBX NC USA
By jerrymay at 2014-03-21 14:29
Hello:
I have been looking so far, now feel I must introduce myself. I will start by explaining the caps in the title.
OBX stands for the Outers Banks . NC is North Carolina. USA

I am retired. ,I am a member of The Magnolia Society, The Camellia Society, and the NNGA (Northern Nut Growers Association). I volunteer at Elizabethan Gardens located on Roanoke Island .

brassavola seeds
By profmaiz at 2014-03-18 19:01
hi, interested in brassavola seeds. may you help ? thanks.

Back in the USA
By CambriaWhat at 2014-02-24 20:17
Well, my move from Paris to Kentucky is complete. I had to say goodbye to all my little green pets in the flat, but my ex-flatmate is sending me pictures now and then so I get to at least see pictures of the blooms.



My new projects include fixing up the sunroom in the house I'm now living in, which was full of dead, dry, or stringy-leaved plants, and making it into the tropical haven it should be! Here's what it looks like so far...





I was on edge not having any orchids in my new home so when I saw some in K-Mart the other day for half off, I grabbed two.



I also became a volunteer at my local botanical garden, which although it is small, has a nice collection of orchids and will be an excellent opportunity to learn. Hopefully I will be growing flasks soon and begin building a collection of orchids that I really love!

.
By OrchidThieves at 2014-02-17 04:31
Making the world a better place, one orchid at a time.

First Light!
By CambriaWhat at 2014-02-01 14:23
Wow, today the first rays of sunlight have made it into the flat. Light meter readings have skyrocketed to between 4000 - 5000 lux on the orchids and up to 8000 in the direct light. What a huge difference!




Light Meter Readings
By CambriaWhat at 2014-02-01 07:41
All windows face west, readings in lux (take off a zero for footcandles)

Taken 31 Jan 2014 at 12:30
Window 1 - 3600
Window 2 - 2800
Window 3 - 3600


Paph Dropped, Both Phals now in Bud
By CambriaWhat at 2014-01-11 00:17
The paph I brought home on Nov 28 has faded and fallen off the stem. It took about a week from when I first noticed the petals were fading to wilt, fold up, and drop off. All the color has left the drying flower, and it is now a transparent tannish brown. I am trying to preserve it. Thread with pics here.

Meanwhile, the fuchsia phal has finally shown its first bud. The white one is up to five and looks as if it might keep going. My expectations have been exceeded already, so every new day is bonus. When they actually manage to bloom I will probably be parked in front of them for hours every day, staring at the blossoms. Thread with pics.

It feels like I actually know the plants now, after taking care of them for over a year. I've inspected their leaves, roots, and spikes so many times over the past year that I think I could draw both of them in detail from memory. Seeing them spike has been so rewarding. The blooms will make me very, very proud and happy!

The days are starting to get longer. Light is increasing bit by bit. Today I measured over 1500 lux for the south window even though it was close to 4 PM and cloudy. Plants are going to start perking up soon, I can already sense them waking up.

 
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