New orchid

schmiggle

Arachnoprince
Active Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Messages
1,925
This is an Aeranthes ramosa I ordered from Marlow's orchids that came today:

20161020_184638.jpg 20161020_184652.jpg
Apparently it's flowering size, but even if it's not, I'm happy to grow it until it is. I'm a little sad that the leaves on the right seem a bit damaged, but hopefully with a bit of care it will become a large, happy plant. :) The flowers look like small lovecraftian gods, based on internet pictures.
 

The Snark

Dumpster Fire of the Gods
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
8,318
Nice. Best of luck. Remember, these tykes strongly tend to be epiphytes. They love clinging to tree trunks, supporting each other by growing in large 'colonies' that aid in retaining moisture around the roots.
The roots. A paradox. Loves to have wet roots but they also need to get dry to retard mold and fungi growth. Lots of air circulation is pretty much mandatory. A common practice for watering them in nurserys is dipping the entire plant in water then letting it dry out, once every 24 hours.
These are southern hemisphere so I have no idea when they flower; what time of year.
 

schmiggle

Arachnoprince
Active Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Messages
1,925
Definitely an epiphyte, it grows in eastern Madagascar so it basically gets the same conditions year round...I have read that it is summer-flowering in some places but continually-flowering in others, so who knows. The seller suggested I grow it either mounted or in saucers of shallow water, for now I'm doing the latter because I don't want to disturb the roots. Saucers of water sounded odd to me too, but he's said he and a friend at AOS had good luck with water culture and that it enhanced root growth. The montane forests of eastern Madagascar are certainly very wet places.
 

The Snark

Dumpster Fire of the Gods
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
8,318
You mean the pot the plant is in sitting in a saucer of water? That seems to work. Very common and convenient way of keeping them as houseplants in the US. Similar to African violets.
I don't know most of the little tricks growers use. But the giant factory farm south of here: All plants hanging with some medium for the roots. Coconut fiber the most common. The roof is plastic screen. black, triple layers cutting sunlight down about 80-90 percent. They are spray fed a hydroponic growth solution for a few minutes every 2 hours during daylight. That farm produces about 150,000 a year.
But you can't go by the factory farm procedures with roots as a large root mass is undesirable for shipping.

They are very hardy plants, and very slow growing. That can be a problem in that if you screw something up, overdose fertilizer as example, it may not show stress for months.

Here's your trivia weirdness. Most of the factory orchids sold the world over. The seedlings spend up to the first 4 years of their life in hermetically sealed jars. No air at all! They create their own environment.
Four years to produce a seedling 2 inches long? ARRRG!!
 

schmiggle

Arachnoprince
Active Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Messages
1,925
I had no idea...This one was imported from Madagascar (I thought it was captive-bred, and had I known, I probably wouldn't have ordered it--oh well), and it had at least two full-sized leaves when imported, because I know the spot on the bottom right leaf was already there when imported. It is three years old since importation, and apparently at least four years old in Madagascar, making it at least 7 years old now? :O I had no idea. I do know that cypripedium orchids can live 100 years in the wild and take 6-8 years to reach flowering size, so it seems like these flowers work similarly.
 

The Snark

Dumpster Fire of the Gods
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
8,318
Interesting. I just had a massive growth spurt among my orchids. Massive for orchids anyway: 5 new leaves in the past 3 weeks since I moved them into a small tree with better light conditions.

Orchids are colony plants in a way. They can propagate from their roots. They grow into a great mass spreading commonly along tree trunks and branches. These colonies create their own environment and ecosystem conducive to seedlings getting a start. Some colonies in the rain forests are estimated to be well over 1000 years old.

A typical orchid colony on a branch with some Staghorn tossed in. The orchid colony covers about 120 linear feet of that tree's trunk and branches.


Here is a seedling I was given. It's 3 inches tall with about a 12 inch root. It's around 10 years old.
 

schmiggle

Arachnoprince
Active Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Messages
1,925
That is so interesting! Just like forests--trees make better conditions for themselves, so a forest naturally makes more trees.

Out of curiosity, what kinds of orchids do you grow?
 
Top