Saturday, May 2, 2009

Brassia Rex 'Sakata' backbulb

Brassia Rex - Photo by Richard LindbergBrassia Rex is the primary hybrid Brassia verrucosa x Brassia gireoudiana It is a very popular fragrant plant.

I got an overgrown plant about a year ago and took it apart. As is often the case with plants where the owner has waited too long, there was root damage while opening up the root ball.

I soaked the plant and tried to be careful. I used my fingers and a lot of patience. I ended up with seven divisions. This is one of them, what was left after the leads were removed. Two joined pseudobulbs with no leaves or roots. After a few months it had sprouted, not only from the base of a pseudobulb as was expected but also keikis from the top of each one. Mouse over the picture below to see the keikis better.

In this picture four more months have passed. Everything is larger and roots have developed more. The basal sprout is ready to separate and the keikis have enough roots now to keep growing.

The two keikis will be potted in bark, moved to the dry, high light section and hand watered. I'll use the smallest pot I have and fill it two-thirds with foam peanuts.

If the basal sprout has roots to match the top I will pot it in rock and put it in the collection where I can keep an eye on it. It is vulnerable to over watering and water standing in the new growth.

The backbulbs have done their job and can now be discarded. Even though they are still green, it is very unlikely that they will sprout again.

The difference between a keiki and a basal sprout is that the basal sprout is the result of an eye activating. It is attached through the rhizome and is part of the plant. A keiki is a separate plant with a very weak attachment. A very stressed plant will grow a keiki.


  1. thanks for your information. Very nice blog.

  2. Thank you. I wish I could read your site/blog, it looks as if it would be interesting.

  3. Or are you associated with "Flowers Orchids"? I was referring to the LCNurseries site.

  4. Nice blog. thanks for the information. very useful.