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  #1  
Old 11-28-2018, 09:14 PM
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Dollythehun Dollythehun is offline
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Dividing backbulbs Female
Default Dividing backbulbs

I never watch YouTube! However, my attention was called to Roger's Orchids. He was discussing the Oncidium tribe. I've looked for the video and can't find the link.

Anyway, Roger was inspecting his Twinkles, which had exploded in growth. Now since there were lots of leafless backbulbs, Roger said he was going to divide them. He said that for the health of the plant and asthetics, it was wise to divide them.

Mine have done the same thing, exploded with growth, bloomed their heads off, and now have lots of leafless bulbs. I'm thinking he's right. Much like an ornamental grass grows out and has to be divided to get rid of the "bald" center, once divided, the newer divisions usually take right off. I'd like to hear your thoughts?
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Old 11-28-2018, 10:38 PM
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I agree. I'm trying a couple of cymbidium ensifolium bulbs at the moment and have had success with catasetum bulbs. However it's very similar to starting with seedlings, they seemingly take years to get fully established and capable of blooming. That said I did have microglossum bloom after 2 years. Probably differs from genera to genera.
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  #3  
Old 11-29-2018, 09:47 AM
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I vote against removing them, unless the size of the plant is becoming unmanageable, which seems unlikely for an Oncidium Twinkle.

If the leafless pseudobulbs are still green, they are still photosynthesizing, in addition to being water, nutrient, and energy stores for the colony, making it far healthier and resilient in the face of stresses.
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Old 11-29-2018, 10:02 AM
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Hmmm. I have three. I might experiment with the worst one. Thanks, Ray.
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Old 11-29-2018, 11:23 AM
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Hmmmm is right. As we discussed, DTH, it does appear similar to ornamental grass, where center dies out. Made sense.

Now that I read Ray's comment, it would be a bit different. Back bulbs, if repotted, will start new growth. Ornamental grass, once dead in the center, stays dead. I don't usually repot Onc or Cymb until they run out of room in top of pot. I recently repotted a Cymb (the monster one) and it took off like crazy. Backbulbs are all starting new growth (separate pot).

Another Onc I repotted to much larger size pot with lots of room to spare (S/H) and didn't take out back bulbs. I kind of regret it, as it was more back bulb than growth. So far, isn't doing much. Main regret is how silly it looks to have a bunch of back bulbs with a small plant in growth, and a couple of inches to spare on all sides of pot. Displaywise, it's gonna look strange for quite some time.
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Old 11-29-2018, 11:36 AM
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But the divisions of ormanentals often take right off. Ray has a good point, no doubt, but I think I m going to experiment with just one and see what happens. They look ridiculous. The pot size isn't the problem. Plus, I'd have plants to give away.
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Old 11-29-2018, 02:08 PM
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I think either way, you'll be fine. And if you don't like the way they look, divide away! I whack off parts of leaves, sometimes whole leaves, just because there's a blemish I don't care for. Which isn't supposedly a great idea. And your point about being able to share is well-noted.
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Old 11-29-2018, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WaterWitchin View Post
I think either way, you'll be fine. And if you don't like the way they look, divide away!
I think we can all agree on that!
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Old 11-29-2018, 06:10 PM
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Oncidiums are pretty tough. As long as you have new growth that hasn't yet set roots, dividing and removing old back bulbs should be perfectly fine and it will not miss a beat. The old backbulbs will probably even put out a new growth if kept in a humid spot.
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