Friday, December 21, 2012

Cattleya Alliance Hybrids

When I first started growing orchids, like most people I started with hybrids. As I refined my personal taste over the years, I've gotten rid of most of my Cattleya Alliance hybrids, but there are a few I've kept out of sentimental reasons, or just because I really like them.  Here are some of them.  Culture for all of them is the same.  Growing in Hydroton, watered when dry (in between rains), fertlized when I remember, and left outside year round from about 32F to whatever summertime gives.

Starting out with one of the oldest orchids I have, Cattleya Garrett Collins. I remember ordering this over my brand new cell phone while I was waiting for my son to finish kindersoccer.  Remember when Orchids magazine was a small mag with all the ads in the back?  I used to go to the ads first :)  This was from a "special" that Gold Country was offering.  To give an idea of how long ago it was, that son who was at kindersoccer practice is now 17 years old.  It currently is in a 10" square pond basket filled with Hydroton.  The only complaint I have with this one is since it blooms on partially matured new puesdobulbs, and it is constantly growing new pseudobulbs, I never get the mass of blooms that plants that bloom seasonally give.  But the upside is it is almost always in bloom.  Oh and can't the forget the absolutely delicious fragrance it has.

Another pink hybrid, it also is currently in a 10" square pond basket filled with Hydroton.  It too is one of the first orchids I ever aquired.  I remember buying this at an OSWP spring show - and possibly it was from Fishing Creek Orchids.  That I'm not positive on.  Unfortunately I've lost the tag over the years, and although I absolutely do not buy NOIDs, I've kept this one because I truely like the flower.  When it was smaller, it only bloomed in the spring.  Now, as it has gotten larger, it blooms whenever it feels like it :)  When I took this picture, it had two spikes fully opened, and another set of blooms. And it has a lovely fragrance as well.

This lovely hybrid is Bc. Marg Putman but the reverse cross.  I received this at a Tallahassee orchid society meeting about two years ago.  This is the second blooming.  One of my favorite hybrids is Bl. Morning Glory, and this is the closest I have to it.

A lovely Laelia hybrid is next.  I aquired this from Carter & Holmes 5 - 6 years ago maybe?  The original tag reads L. rubescens alba x aurea.  Since L. rubescens var. aurea has been given species status since then, this is now a hybrid.  This plant gets better and better every year.  The color is actually a bit more yellow in person, my camera doesn't seem to capture the color well.  Also, please forgive the damage on the flowers, I didn't have a chance to take pictures when the flowers were fresh.

This is the first blooming on a plant that I raised from compot.  Guaricattonia Renate 'S&W'.  Colorful cheery little guy. This plant still fits comfortably in a 3 in pot.

Another "special" from Gold Country bought way back when.  This is also a frequent bloomer, except during the hottest part of the summer on partially developed psuedobulbs.  Lovely fragrance as well.

One that I actually picked up in the last couple years, I had to add at least one red one.  Hawkinsara Koolau Sunset. I'm pretty sure this has a clonal name, but I don't have it written down.

ok, moving on to the whites.  First is C. Mem. Ruby Cosby.  Another plant from Carter & Holmes, I find this one not the strongest grower.  But it limps along, and does bloom.

And Caulaelia Mizoguchi.  I received this one a while ago while still living in PA, so pre 2004.  I do remember it came from Carter & Holmes, and it was one of those $7.00 plugs they sold back then.  These pictures are from last year, and it is again in spike as I write today.  This year I have three spikes.  The nice thing about Mizoguchi is it is sequentially blooming, and remains in flower for a good amount of time.

And one I picked up last summer from Odoms.  I'm not sure any flower can beat the fragrance of this one.  Rhyncovola Jimminey Cricket. It too has a clonal name, that I can't remember right now.  Edit:  I should add that this particular hybrid, I do not grow under the conditions I mentioned above.  When I went to repot last summer, it naturally divided itself, and I mounted one piece, and the other piece is in a net pot with lava rock.  The potted piece has been brought inside to grow under T-5s with a minimum temperature of the mid 50sF in the winter. 

And finishing up with a great summer bloomer.  So far, all spikes bloom at the same time, putting on a nice show.  Cattleychea Newberry Butterscotch.

I do have a few more hybrids, but I don't have access to those pictures right now, so I'll end up here.  And Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Hoya cembra

I've seen this Hoya's name written as cembra and cembrae, and I'm not sure which is correct.  This plant is also commonly confused with Hoya odorata as well.  I aquired this plant in about 2008, as a very very small rooted cutting.  At first it struggled a bit, but once it started growing, it hasn't stopped.  It bloomed last fall for the first time with a couple flowers.  This year's blooming is much much better.  I grow this one in Turface in a 6 inch pot, allowing it to dry out briefly in between waterings.  Direct morning sun, and it seems to handle my cool winters fine so far.  The flowers are long lasting, about two weeks, and for my plant at least, the buds take turns opening.  Here are a few pictures showing the whole plant, buds, a flower and a close up of a groups of buds and flowers.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Bulbophyllum species Part II

Some more of my species of Bulbophyllums that I have bloomed and manged to have pictures of.

Bulbophyllum medusae.  One of the first Bulbophyllum I ever aquired, I have it growing on a mount, and I pretty much can't keep it wet enough, so it doesn't do that well for me.  I'm hoping someday it will grow off the mount, and I'll be able to divide and pot it.  Or I'll just get another one.  :) A few pictures of this one as I think it deserves it!

Bulbophyllum corolliferum.  I've had this one for a few years now.  It took a while to adjust, but once it did, it grows very well.  When I kept it in the same amount of light as the other Bulbos I sunburned it, so it is now kept a bit shaded.  This past year it started blooming in mid September, and still is blooming as of today.  Total of about 20 spikes over that time. I had it growing in one of the baskets I make with CHC, but yesterday repotted it into a spaghum moss lined basket with a Turface/Perlite mix.  Charming little guy. These pictures are from last year, I didn't take any this year.

Bulbophyllum sikkimense.  Another charming one, I give it my typical Bulbophyllum culture. I find this one interesting as the color changes significantly as the flowers age.  These two photos were taken on the same day, from the same plant, but just different age of the blooms.  They open a very peachy color and darken over about a day to a pink.  When I received this plant, it was much bigger than expected, so looking at the pots I had, I decided to use up a Stanhopea wire basket.  Lined it with spaghnum moss, filled with lava rock,, and then topped with spaghnum moss.  A bigger basket that I typically use, but so far it seems to be working.

Bulbophyllum purpurescens.  Tiny little thing, it isn't the happiest with me over the last year since I acquired it from Krull-Smith. I'm going to repot it here soon and see what I can do with it.  But even so, it did bloom for me last summer.

Bulbophyllum lasiochilum.  Adorable plant, adorable flower.  It is mounted on tree fern, so it gets watered a lot in summer, but in winter while it is under lights, I just lay it down in a tray, with some water in it.  Otherwise my typical Bulbo culture.

Bulbophyllum catenulatum.  Just received this a few weeks ago from Andy's.  It came mounted, but at least the mount is a rectangluar block of wood, so I can set it in a small try of water - which I have.  It has about 100 dried up spikes, indicating this is a frequent bloomer? and it came with one bud which did open.  Plant and flowers are tiny.  The flower is maybe the size of the nail on my pinky finger, but very brightly colored. I had put it under my T5s when I recieved this one as Andy is calling it an intermediate grower, but is seemed to resent that much light, so I have moved it off to the side a little bit.  We will see if it does better there.

Bulbophyllum NOT lilaceum.  At least that is what I call it. Aquired from Carter and Holmes at least four years ago, maybe more.  Tag reads lilaceum.  So not a surprise that a plant from there is mislabeled.  Anyways, this may be the first Bulbophyllum I ever got, and I mounted it of course.  But unlike medusae, this one seems to love being mounted.  I have taken pieces off of this a few times, and they always grow well potted too.  I'm attaching a picture from last year, but right now it has one spike open and 5 more spikes developing.  As soon as I get an updated picture, I will update this thread.

That's it for now, hope you enjoyed!

Edit: February 2013 - Please see my post on Bulbophyllym ambrosia as well.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Bulbophyllum species

I've mentioned before that Bulbophyllums are one of my favorite genera of orchids.  I don't have a whole lot of them, but I'm working on that.  I realized though, that I hadn't posted them here, so here goes.  I do have a few hybrids, but I'll save them for another post.

I grow most of these in pretty bright light, and attempt to keep them wet all summer where they grow outside.  Under my conditions, that is difficult, but I'm playing around with different potting ideas to get there, and it seems to be paying off as more are starting to grow better and even begin blooming.  As I had acquired a few new Bulbos this past summer, I no longer had room for them under my T5s for winter.  So I cleared out the little office that my hubby was using for all of his sports memorabilia (they are now in boxes in the garage :) ) and bought MR16 LEDs.  I'm using three of them to cover the space, and hopefully that will be enough for them.  Also, since the Bulbos now have their own little room, I am able to raise the night time temps to 62F, and it typically warms up in the day to at least the mid to high 70s.  The room does have a window which gets afternoon direct sun, which hopefully will help with the lighting.

Here are some of the species that I have managed to bloom over the last year.

Bulbophyllum rothschildianum.  Acquired a year ago in bloom from Krull-Smith, this is my first rebloom.  Growing in a type of basket, filled with LECA and topped off with spaghnum moss.  This is one of the few Bulbos I do leave outside in winter, and supposedly it doesn't mind the cold. Still a young plant, hopefully it will continue to grow well, and I'll get better bloomings.

Bulbophyllum cupreum.  Acquired maybe 2 years ago as a small division from a most generous lady in Ohio.  Growing in a shallow clear plastic pot in Turface.  This is the first blooming, and it has a second spike in bloom right now. A couple pictures, and if you look carefully at the first one, you can see one of the little bugs have pollinia on it.  Second picture is the result  :) Growing conditions are as described above.

Bulbophyllum grandiflorum.  Acquired from the amazingly generous lady in Ohio, again about 2 years ago.  This is growing in the kind of basket thing I make, with LECA as the media, topped with spaghnum moss.  Gave me 5 spikes this year, but unfortunately, the first 4 were when the plant was still outside, and something ate them.  Just drilled directly into the bud.  This last spike developed much later inside and was allowed to bloom out.  Guess the plant felt sorry for me, and decided to give me at least one bloom.  Growing conditions same as described above.

Bulbophyllum fascinator.  Acquired two years ago from Krull-Smith.  This one sulked for me awhile, but is growing nicely now.  In the Chinese take out tray converted pot, with Turface as the growing media, it is due to be repotted soon.  Hope it doesn't sulk again.  Sorry for the dark picture, I do have other ones, but they are on my flickr account, which I can't seem to link to from here for some reason.  Grown under cultural conditions described above, and I had a total of 4 flowers this growing season.

Bulbophyllum putidum.  This one is actually mounted, because I received it that way, again from that wonderful lady in Ohio.  It gets watered a lot while it is outside in the summer, in the winter, under the LEDs, it is sitting in a tray of water, that I refill after it dries out.  These pictures were taken a month or maybe two ago, and it is still putting out spike after spike for me.  It is in bloom today as I write this.

This plant I received about a year ago from TOF, labeled as Bulbophyllum sp. Sumatra.  It was a huge plant when I received it, and I split it and have it growing two ways.  One is mounted, and that one hasn't bloomed, and one is potted in the almost basket thing that I make, with lava rock, covered with spaghnum rock.  Two spikes this past fall. This plant is a long rambler, and is difficult to contain in any type of pot. Cultural conditions are as described above.

ok, think this thread is long enough, I'm going to stop it now, and I'll follow up with a Bulbophyllym species Part II soon.  Hope you enjoyed!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Hoya retusa

I received a small cutting of Hoya retusa about a year and a half ago, and started it in S/H.  It rooted so well in S/H that I just decided to grow it on.  So far it has grown pretty well for me, and this week, bloomed for the first time.  I have quite a few buds, which have a wonderful sweet scent to them when they open. Last winter I did bring it inside to grow it under warm conditions, and I haven't researched to see if this is one that would do outside during the winter.  So as it is doing well, I'll probably bring it in again this winter. I do give it very bright light, during spring, summer and fall, a little less during winter as it was inside.

Unlike many other Hoyas, retusa does not bloom in an umbel.  Each penduncle gives a single bloom, but with so many at one time, it still gives a pretty nice show. It is still relatively small, as it continues to grow, I expect next year it will give an even better blooming.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Catasetum hybrids

My three favorite alliances of orchids are Catasetums, Dendrobiums and Bulbophyllums.  I haven't written or posted many of the Catasetums, so it is time for that. I'm not going to detail how I grow them, I wrote up a pretty detailed culture description on if you are interested.

Within the Catasetum alliance, I prefer the true Catasetums and Clowesias.  Current popular trends in this alliance seem to favor the Mormodes and Cycnoches - which I really am not interested in.  So my collection of these are small, and I manage to acquire only a couple a year.

While I prefer to grow species, I have kept a few hybrids over the years, and here are a few of them.

Catasetum expansum x Jumbo Heart

Ctsm (Doris' Choice x Breckenridge Onxy) x (Susan Fuchs x spitzii)

Catasetum Olga

Unfortunately the rest of my photos are on flickr, which doesn't allow me to do a link to Blogger.  So as they rebloom and I get new pics to my current photo site, I'll update this post.

Edit:  February 2013.  Another hybrid has come into bloom, and this is the plant that started my love of the Catasetum Alliance.  Clowesetum Dragon's Treasure.  Not only is it a beautiful flower, but the fragrance is perfect, strong, fresh and lemony. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Hoya carnosa complex

I really have no idea whether these following plants are all closely related, but they look like it, so I'll put them all here in one post.  Also, I pretty much grow all these under the same conditions, except for one - fungii.  Most of them get very bright light, allowed to dry completely between waterings, and left outside in the winter down to freezing temperatures. Fungii though is kept shaded, and more even waterings, although I do let it stay outside with the rest in winter.

Since fungii requires different culture, I'll start with it.

Hoya fungii

Hoya fungii by renee_nmp
Hoya carnosa - regular

Hoya dasyantha

Hoya Ban Nong Noy

And Hoya rubra