Saturday, February 14, 2009

Popular hybrids are good as practice rescues

Phal Brother Lawrence 'Taisuco' x Phal Taisuco Glory - Photo by Richard LindbergDebra Atwood of Napa Valley Orchids was talking about selecting orchids for a collection the other night at the Sonoma County Orchid Society meeting. She said that success comes from getting mature, previously bloomed plants. Not to let our friends give us orchids that they were too soft-hearted to throw in the trash.

I agree with Debra 85%. I think that everybody should follow her sound advice but should also have one rescue going. It is an important money-saving skill. And if you are like me, you will create your own rescue orchids often enough.

Dendrobium Emma White - Photo by Richard LindbergBut if you enjoy the plants as much as the flowers, then rescues are a good source of orchids. Hard cane Dendrobium hybrids and Phal hybrids are very rewarding to bring back to good health. And when they do bloom, they can continue blooming for weeks, even months.

I have a group of ten Dendrobiums that came to me in a sorry state. They are sitting high up where the light approaches 4000 foot candles and the automatic watering doesn't reach. They love it and are growing very tall. Four of them are in bloom right now, including two Emma Whites.

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