Orchis Italica - How do I grow this from seed?
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  #1  
Old 08-17-2021, 10:35 AM
Yojirex Yojirex is offline
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Orchis Italica - How do I grow this from seed? Male
Question Orchis Italica - How do I grow this from seed?

Hello,

I am a complete newbie to gardening and I'm interested in the Orchis Italica orchid, which lead me to this forum. I have already looked into it a good bit and I know that it's said to be very hard to grow successfully, and even to just find real seeds of it.

As for the seeds, I have found one listing on eBay among the many scammy ones that looks promising to me (here: Orchis Italica (Nackter Mann Orchidee) - Original Terrestrial Orchideen samen | eBay ; it also shows the seeds on the second picture).
Alternatively I would also be willing to buy seeds of it from a member here if anyone has some to sell, I dont mind paying high shipping costs for it either.

Now for the growing part, which is mainly what I'm writing this post for. I have read some mentions of "flasking" and briefly read through some of the links provided on it. But even after doing that, I'm not sure what's the reason why flasking is so good for growing orchids from seed. Can someone please explain it for an amateur like me? And are there other ways of growing them from seed as well that could also work? I'm just trying to understand what options I have and which one might work best in my situation.

Thanks in advance for any answers.
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  #2  
Old 08-17-2021, 10:57 AM
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Fishkeeper Fishkeeper is offline
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I believe those orchids are protected in their native habitat. Also, importing plants (or seeds) from other countries is a tricky business that requires a lot of permits. You should probably look up whether they're legal to keep in the first place, and if so, if that seller is allowed to ship them to wherever you are.

Flasking is done because orchid seeds are easily overwhelmed by all the microorganisms that can be growing on any given substrate, so they're best sprouted in a sterile environment. There are no other known reliable methods for most species.
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  #3  
Old 08-17-2021, 12:01 PM
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Are you specifically looking to grow this plant from seed or do you simply consider it the easiest option to get ahold of the plant? I do recall people sharing a EU vendor on Orchidboard, who specializes in terrestrial orchids if I recall correctly. I will try to find it again.

You are correct that they are difficult to grow from seed, if you manage to get your hands on some real seeds... They need to be sowed in a sterile environment on an Agar based medium which provides all the necessary nutrients. It is not easy to do at home, and success often comes from experience. And then be armed with lots of patience! The reason they need to be down this way is because orchid seeds don't contain an endosperm, which is the tissue surrounding the embryo and which supplies all the nutrients needed for germination. In the wild orchid seed depends on relationships with mycchorhizal fungi which will supply the nutrients. This is why orchids produce thousands and thousands of seeds, the natural chance of successful germination is rather low....
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  #4  
Old 08-17-2021, 12:16 PM
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this is a terrestrial species so will be easier than a non terrestrial species. They can be germinated on moss.

But whether they are real is dubious. I'd go with what has been suggested so far because that seller looks fake to me, every single seed sold was sold to the same (hidden identity) member.

When an ebayer does something like this it usually shows he has something to hide.

recent post on growing terrestrial seedlings:

Cardboard germination of Calopogon tuberosus

Last edited by Shadeflower; 08-17-2021 at 12:19 PM..
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  #5  
Old 08-17-2021, 12:26 PM
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So, I found the website I mentioned, but sadly they don't have any Orchis species on offer... But I'll put the link here anyway. Maybe you could contact him to see if he knows where you can get real seed?

www.myorchids.de
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  #6  
Old 08-17-2021, 02:33 PM
Dusty Ol' Man Dusty Ol' Man is offline
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If you are a complete newbie to orchids, you should not even think about growing from seed. That is an advanced prospect. You should maybe start by learning the wide variety of orchids available and their specific cultures. Choose an easy one to begin, and try your hand at raising it. There are several easy to grow varieties to choose from.
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Old 08-17-2021, 04:15 PM
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If you want to grow European terrestrial orchids, if you can't find Orchis italica, consider some of the Ophrys (bee orchids) www.myorchids.de has some of those - these are getting close to the time that the tubers are emerging from dormancy, but there is still time to ship them since it would be within Germany (MUCH easier than international shipping!). But consider trying one or two from tubers... they do have some specific needs that are very different from tropical epiphytic orchids.
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Old 08-17-2021, 04:52 PM
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I do have a bunch of seeds.
However, my flasking attempt earlier this year didn't yield any results, so I'm not sure seeds are viable and I won't sell them to you.

I intend on giving it another shot later this month, if protocorms appear you can have a flask for the price of shipping.
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Old 08-18-2021, 09:34 AM
Yojirex Yojirex is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camille1585 View Post
So, I found the website I mentioned, but sadly they don't have any Orchis species on offer... But I'll put the link here anyway. Maybe you could contact him to see if he knows where you can get real seed?
Thank you, I wrote him an e-mail. And yes, the reason why I asked about growing it from seeds specifically was because I didn't think it would be possible to get a tuber to grow it from (or even a complete plant) due to its rarity and restrictions.

---------- Post added at 01:34 PM ---------- Previous post was at 01:29 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Fakename View Post
I do have a bunch of seeds.
However, my flasking attempt earlier this year didn't yield any results, so I'm not sure seeds are viable and I won't sell them to you.

I intend on giving it another shot later this month, if protocorms appear you can have a flask for the price of shipping.
Sounds great, please do keep me updated on your next flasking attempt.
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Old 08-18-2021, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yojirex View Post
Thank you, I wrote him an e-mail. And yes, the reason why I asked about growing it from seeds specifically was because I didn't think it would be possible to get a tuber to grow it from (or even a complete plant) due to its rarity and restrictions.
myorchids.de sells tubers of nursery-grown plants. All of the paperwork is covered. In the US, I get his tubers with the help of a friend who has an import permit, and manages all of the CITES paperwork with Dr. Beyrle. A lengthy process. Buying from within the EU would be MUCH easier. (I also have Australian terrestrials from the same source... they clearly have been nurtured from seed, since their seasons are conveniently Northern Hemisphere, they grow right along with the European terrestrials)
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