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This site is protected by my "Tanwen", pronounced "TAHN-wen". From Welsh tan "fire" + gwen "shining, holy".

Tanwen's Orchids

Orchid Flask

On February 18th 2005, I bought an Orchid flask from McBean's Orchids. What is an orchid flask I hear you say ? Well unlike other plants, orchids can only be grown from seed in a laboratory, and the young plants are then sold in sealed flasks, which can then be grown.

Since getting more interested in orchids, I've been keen to give this a try. So I purchased a flask with three orchid hybrids. I will be opening the flask during this weekend (5/6th March) and planting them out into peat pots.

I will be using a compost of fine grade bark, mixed with peat and perlite, which I bought from Burnham Nurseries.


The contents of the flask are as follows:

'John Banks' = Zygopetalum Blackii x Zygopetalum crinitum
'Skippy Ku' = Zygopetalum graminifolium x Zygopetalum intermedium

A Zygo. Blackii is a cross of Zygopetalum crinitum x Zygopetalum Perrenoudii

There is also a Vanda Yolanda present in the flask. I will be confirming whether there are 3 hybrids present, or whether these have been crossed in some fashion to produce a single hybrid.

Zygopetalums are native to South America, while the Vanda is native to Asia.

I have only been able to track down a photograph of a Zygopetalum crinitum, but it should give you some idea what these baby orchids should look like when they grow up.

Zygopetalum crinitum
Zygopetalum crinitum

Update - 6 March 2005

As you can see below, I have managed to plant out my orchids, all 40+ of them ! I know, I was shocked too. So now its fingers crossed time. They need a lot of looking after at this stage (watering every 4-7 days). They get their first feed in about 3 weeks time, and remain in those pots for 6 months. After that, they can be repotted into their own pots with grown up compost and food.

Orchids Planted Out



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