Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Cattleya walkeriana

Cattleya walkeriana - Flower photo by Richard LindbergLast year I bought myself a Christmas present, a nice Cattleya walkeriana in bloom. When I cleaned out the tree fern fiber a month after buying it, roots were already dead. The other two were leads and still had some roots, but this piece had no roots at all.

Cattleya walkeriana - Plant photo by Richard LindbergCattleya walkeriana grows in Brazil on trees and moist rocks at elevations up to 6000'. It is fragrant, needs bright light and blooms in the fall. It doesn't like to be disturbed.

This two-pseudobulb piece was one of three pieces that I determined to save. I propped it up in some rocks and waited. During the summer it sprouted and earlier this month it sent out a spike. C walkeriana is very interesting in the way it blooms off of new growth. It is one of only two Cattleya species to bloom this way.

The buds are now open and I got the flower picture. I will watch it and perhaps take another if the color deepens.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cymbidium Hybrid

Since I have a series of posts about Cymbidiums I would do one more about Cymbidium backbulbs and then put them all together as a page on www.backbulb.com. Repotting Cymbidiums is a separate skill from repotting an epiphyte as are most of the orchids we collect.

Cymbidium hybrid - Plant photo by Richard LindbergWith most backbulb divisions I am looking for green. Any green and it has a chance to sprout. Cymbidium backbulbs look dead and ugly. The measure of viability for a Cymbidium is firmness. Truly dead backbulbs are soft, even are hollow shells. If the backbulb is firm it can sprout.

This one has only just barely survived. I made the division in June 2010. That summer it sprouted and grew a single, very small pseudobulb. It almost looks like a new growth. This year it has produced another new growth that doesn't look all that strong either. With the growing season about done that is about it for this year. Who knows how long it will take to bloom again.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Cattleya Chocolate Drop x Ctna Why Not

Cattleya Chocolate Drop x Ctna Why Not - Flower photo by Richard LindbergCattleya Chocolate Drop x Ctna Why Not - Plant photo by Richard LindbergThe Cattleya Chocolate Drop x Ctna Why Not I got in early October is blooming already. The buds appeared about a month ago and are now open.

This plant is in sphagnum over peanuts in a5-inch clay pot. It are two pseudobulbs and it stands ten inches above the pot.

It is a pretty flower but I am having a hard time getting the color right. It is a much darker red. The flowers should be open for awhile so I will get a chance to try it in differnt lighting.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cymbidium Spikes, Even Buds

Cymbidium buds - Photo by Richard Lindberg

The Sonoma collection has a bunch of Cymbidium hybrids and only a couple of them have tags. I am going to fix that by assigning them all inventory numbers and taking notes and pictures. I may not know the names but I WILL know when they bloom and what the flowers look like.

I have been moving them to better locations, places where they will not be rained upon so that I can control the watering and can keep the snails off of them. While doing that I have been also inspecting them. I am seeing spikes and in one case buds.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Rhyncholaeliocattleya Haruko Kanzaki

Rhyncholaeliocattleya Haruko Kanzaki - Photo by Richard Lindberg

Registered by Akatsuka Orchid Gardens, 1999. Rlc Jeremy Island (Carter & Holmes, 1987) x Rlc Fred Stewart (Stewart, 1966).

Monday, November 21, 2011

Outdoor Winter Orchid Work Area

The covered outdoor area is continuing to take shape. The top part has all the plants hanging below the nine-foot translucent roof. No more will be added now. With that done I wanted to get the lower part set up as a usable work space. It is not very pretty but I can show you how it will be through the winter and for the whole year.

North end - Storage and Cymbidium benchesThe north end already had a lattice to separate the area and I added some storage for things I use often. This will be a selection of pots, tools and materials. I have another storage area but it is in the garage and hard to work from. I will keep more items but not all of any of them. If I use up something I can make a run to the garage to re-stock.

East side - Cymbidiums in winter, Cattleya in summerJust to the south are five feet of three-tiered benches. They will hold the Cymbidiums from now until May. After that the Cymbidiums will go to Sonoma into another outdoor area that is covered by shade cloth for the summer growth season. They will be replaced by plants coming out of the greenhouses to summer outdoors. Orchids love the air movement and the natural temperature change.

Just to the south of the benches is a cinder block wall, four blocks tall and two blocks long. One of the problems that showed up this summer was how far the sun reached under the roof in the afternoon, both from the south and from the west. On a hot day, this was enough to damage plants. The wall should be enough to shield the tiered benches.

South end - Potting areaOn the south of the wall and running all the way to the fence will be the main potting area. The surface will be painted plywood coming out about a foot beyond the plastic shelves. Under the surface will be bark, sphagnum and more supplies for potting.

There is still plenty of work to do but the result will be an area in which I can work all year long.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Phaleanopsis Taisuco Swan x Taisuco Mercy

Phaleanopsis Taisuco Swan x Taisuco MercyHere is an update on the mounted Phal that lost all its leaves. This is in the Napa greenhouse in the shade of some other mounts. The plant is doing much better in this location. The light level is lower and it is getting more water.

Rescue mounted Phal starting its second leaf

The exciting news is that the plant is starting to grow the second leaf. The new crown is taking hold and it may get back to a nice 3-to-5 leaf growth. That first leaf is small and wierdly shaped but it IS a leaf.

I don't want to get ahead of myself and declare the plant cured but that second leaf is a big milestone. I have gone as far as assigning it an inventory number and adding it to the catalog. I would like to see a nice cascade of white flowers but even if there are no more setbacks, flowers are a couple of years away.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Cattleya Chocolate Drop x Ctna Why Not

I have had this plant less than two months and it is blooming already. I usually wait for the flowers to open but the buds are so pretty that I had to take a picture.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Cattleya Carlos E. Ospina

Cattleya Carlos E. Ospina - Flower photo by Richard LindbergCattleya Carlos E. Ospina - Plant photo by Richard LindbergA nice surprise in the greenhouse was seeing the Catt hybrid with a flower open and a second as a bud. This is a plant that was in the waiting-for-repotting area and the last time I looked at it there was no developing spike.

The tag has Slc Jungle Jewel 'Mohave' AM/AOS x C Sandra Turner HCC/AOS. That makes for a long blog entry title so I checked the RHS Parentage Search to see if someone had registered this cross. In this case Fred Clark had indeed registered it in 2009. And since the plant was from Sunset Valley Orchids I left on the awards when listing the components.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Rodriguezia decora

Rodriguezia decora - Flower photo by Richard LindbergMy Rodriguezia decora has outgrown its mount. I am cutting off a 2-pseudobulb lead as this month's free orchid.

Rodriguezia decora grows in Brazil in cool to warm mountain forests and grasslands. Fragrant, bright light.The genus Rodriguezia (Rdza) contains about 30 species mostly found in Brazil.

The rules are the same as always: You pay actual postage and it comes Priority Mail. (I'll let you know, but it will be around $6.) If you have not had a free orchid before, add a comment claiming it and them go to this page to get my direct email address so we can work out the details. "First time" restriction ends at 4pm PST on Thursday the 17th. After that, anybody who wants it can have it. Continental US only please.

The plant is not big but it has a 5-inch rhizome and a 15-inch spike so it can take up some space.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Orchid Virus?

I am not a person who is too concerned about virus, but I understand the danger of one spreading through a collection. But when I saw this flower, "Oh-oh, virus?" was my first thought.

This is one of the Sonoma collection plants. I don't know what it is and when I saw the buds I was happy. This is the first bloom in the time I have been working in the greenhouse.

The good news for the collection is that the plant has been off to one side and has never been re-potted. I didn't bother much with the NOID plants giving them last place in the maintenance plan.

If it does have a virus it is a shame because it is a nice flower. Without the color break it looks like Chadwick's "Queen Elizabeth".

Monday, November 14, 2011

Cymbidium Maggie Lindberg

Cymbidium Maggie Lindberg - Plant photo by Richard LindbergOne last post on the out-of-season Cymbidium division I got at the SCOS meeting. I potted it today in a big pot, about 4-gallons I think. The pseudobulbs are big and I wanted to leave enough room for a couple years growth.

This is in a Supersoil and bark mix. The plant produces large white flowers with a pink center. Since I am never going to sell the plant or enter in in judging I decided to name it. I have no idea what the "REAL" name is so I am going for the points for naming it for family members.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


When I was last at the Sonoma greenhouse I noticed a sheath on one of the plants was looking plump. I looked at it so the light source was behind it and saw the shadow of a spike forming inside.

This is exciting, not only because I haven't seen the flower but because it is on the plant so far known as CH4067. It is supposedly from Carter and Holmes with a catalog number of 4067. I contacted C&H to ask about it and that number is a different genus entirely so at least the number is wrong. Once I get a nice flower picture I will ask again. If it is one of their crosses they will recognize it.