Monday, November 24, 2008

An orchid I can't grow? Please!

The genus Cymbidiella contains 3 species from Madagascar. They need constant hot, humid conditions with lots of water year round and good drainage similar to growing a Phaius.

I have a Cymbidiella rhodochila. The correct name is pardalina but it is better know as rhodochila. It needs regular watering and fertilizer year round.

I got the plant from a raffle table. It was small and I and had little to choose from. I took it home and repotted it. Then I read up on it to see where to put it in the greenhouse.

An article I found about the genus says that the culture of Cymbidiella is not difficult and then goes on describe the ways in which they are difficult.

The first thing I read was that they hated to have their roots disturbed. Oops! Too late to avoid that. What next? Never let them go below 59 degrees. Strike two! Anything else?

I didn't see it right away and then it hit me. They described it as a larger plant than I had. I had a seedling! Strike three!

There is no place in the greenhouse that has a climate like Madagascar. Last winter I brought it into the house for a few months and it grew some but probably had too little light to bloom.

Summer is a problem in the greenhouse too. With the heater off the temperature can go down into the lower 50s and once in awhile the upper 40s.

The soup man says "No Cymbidiella rhodochila flowers for you!"

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