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  #1  
Old 12-08-2018, 03:33 AM
birdbrain birdbrain is offline
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Default Orchid seeds

Hello fellow orchid enthusiasts, how hard is it to get an viable orchid out of a seed? I see that eBay lists orchid seeds. I heard once on a science program that it takes like 20 years for an orchid to bloom? I’m thinking that was probably wild orchids not hybrids. I think I like the challenge. Send anything that would help me. Thank you so much.
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  #2  
Old 12-08-2018, 03:52 AM
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Orchid Whisperer Orchid Whisperer is offline
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Beware.

Much of the orchid seed offered on eBay is not orchid seed at all. True orchid seed looks like tan-colored dust. Growing an orchid from seed to blooming can take 5 to 15 years, depending on the type.
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Last edited by Orchid Whisperer; 12-08-2018 at 06:58 AM..
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  #3  
Old 12-08-2018, 10:03 AM
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Agreed. Stay away from Ebay for orchid seeds or do quite a bit of research first. Ebay does not respond to reports about all the fraudulent "orchid seed" listings and many/most of them have high ratings despite being a scam. The fradulent listings are pervasive and until you get the gist of things, it would be easy to fall for one. Granted, they keep the prices cheap so that it's not worthwhile to pursue a claim against them and thus they've proliferated on various sites like Ebay/Amazon/etc.

Rant aside...

Orchids are a huge family (one of the largest) so there's lots of variation in how long it takes to germinate and how long it takes for seedlings to reach maturity. Some can take as little as 1 - 2 years in flask, and then 1 - 2 years to maturity. Others can take 10+ years to reach maturity. I think 20 years would be an exceptional outlier.

Keep in mind that for the vast majority of orchids, to germinate the seedlings, you have to plant them in specialized flasking media in sterile conditions. It can be done by beginners, but generally it's going to take some practice to get it right. Most people send their seeds/seed pods off to a flasking service to save time, money, and stress. For curious hobbyists, you can find lots of info online about flasking orchid seeds.

Also, in case you aren't aware, virtually all orchid seeds are minute ... about the size of a speck of dust or a fine grain of sand. So even if you get a ripe pod, you won't be able to just sort out 10, 30, 100 seeds, you'll be dealing with essentially dust.
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Old 12-08-2018, 10:18 AM
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estación seca estación seca is offline
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There is a lot of information here on Orchid Board about seed propagation. You can find it via the Search function. There are detailed threads from people doing it semi-successfully with household items. Unfortunately the photos are gone from some of the older threads, but the text descriptions are pretty good.
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  #5  
Old 12-09-2018, 10:41 AM
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Go to the Beginner forum and read this thread: Quest for easier to grow seeds for science project at a non-profit
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  #6  
Old 12-11-2018, 05:16 PM
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I will add this bit of info...

Growing orchids from seeds can be a challenge regardless of whether they are seeds of hybrids or species. Each type of orchid has their own set of unique challenges to deal with.

An example of a challenge with growing orchids from seed is breaking the seed’s dormancy. Some orchids have seeds that will not germinate unless the factors that inhibit germination is dealt with.

Blooming time from seed grown plants is dependent on what it is. A range of 3 yrs to 20 yrs is possible, again it depends on what orchid it is you’re growing.
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Last edited by King_of_orchid_growing:); 12-11-2018 at 05:21 PM..
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  #7  
Old 12-12-2018, 12:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchid Whisperer View Post
Beware.

Much of the orchid seed offered on eBay is not orchid seed at all. True orchid seed looks like tan-colored dust
This is so true. We have had people bring the 'orchid seed' to our Orchid Society to ask for help sowing it. We always need to tell them that what they have did not come from an orchid. So, do not buy 'orchid seed' from ebay or Amazon. If you are truly interested in growing orchids from seed, try the types that do not need to be flasked or get seed from a nearby orchid grower. I would recommend studying orchid genetics to learn what traits tend to be dominant and recessive.

Another option is buying a flask of a cross that interests you. We have two serious orchid vendors/growers that belong to our OS who do their own hybridizing and it is always really fascinating to see how the siblings bloom. A good way to try it out might be to visit some nearby orchid vendors and tell them that you are interested in trying it.

Good luck!
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Last edited by Leafmite; 12-12-2018 at 12:06 AM..
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