Thursday, April 19, 2012


The oldest cultivated orchids are plants of the floriferous genus Cymbidium.

The Asian natives have become the orchid mainstay of the cut flower industry, beloved for spikes of white, green, yellow, rose, and red flowers that sometimes last two months or more in water.

These big plants are very easy to grow, given very high light and very cool temperatures; they need 45 degree F autumn nights to set buds.

They often are grown outdoors in warmer climates. Indoors, a humid sun porch or greenhouse suits them best.

Smaller-growing, warmer species are being hybridized to create more temperature-tolerant plants that can grow on more windowsills.

Coupled with high light is a need for regular fertilizer. While most orchids are nee heavy feeders, cymbidiums benefit form 20-20-20 fertilizer applied at ¾ strength with each watering.

Humidity of 50 percent or more also helps, as does an extremely well drained semiterrestrial potting, medium of 50 percent medium fir bark, 30 percent chopped sphagnum moss and 20 percent perlite, with layer of stones or styrene foam on the bottom of a deep pot. Keep evenly moist.
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