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Brassavola cucullata - compotting a flask...

This is a discussion on Brassavola cucullata - compotting a flask... within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; This is my first attempt at comotting plants from flask. It came from a well ...

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  1. #1
    IdahoOrchid's Avatar
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    Default Brassavola cucullata - compotting a flask...

    This is my first attempt at comotting plants from flask. It came from a well respected flasking service and he, as I understand is the norm, sent it already deflasked. What a stupendous service at an ASTOUNDING price. I have discovered that if you are not FAST at responding to emails you most likely will not get the flask you so crave, especially in paphs!!!.

    This is how the plants are sent to you: deflasked and in an inflated twirly bag. It looks like they traveled well in this way. Certainly much better than tumbled and tossed in a large glass or plastic container. It also gives him the opportunity to reduce the cost by dividing up the spoils and on shipping.

    OK all you experts, how many are in there?
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    Default The set up

    Here are some of the things I used to accomplish the task. The colander has the sphag in it waiting to be wetted. There is a bowl of RO water and some special fertilizer I got for cuttings. I put it in the water at about 1/2 strength with the measuring spoons.

    On the left is the bowl I plan on using to do the compot. At this point I am wondering if it will be big enough considering the mass of plants in the bag!

    A couple of things added once I got started was a chop stick, a pair of plastic tweezers and some sharp, pointy bonsai shears.
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    Default HOLY MOLY!!!!

    Now I am SERIOUSLY considering where I am going to put all these babies! I was promised a quantity of at least 25 plants: 1... 2... 3... oh forget it.

    First as they were uncerimoniously dumped into the bowl.

    Second after some gentle teasing and separating.

    Any clues on quantity yet?
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    Default Let the sorting begin...

    Here is how I sorted the plants, at least a little bit. I got a tray and lined it with a paper towel and then wetted the towel to keep the roots humid while working with them. Oh, the colander is in the sink with the sphag soaking now.

    Yup, it is ready!
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    Default PAY DIRT!!

    Here are the first TWO compot that I put together. I totally forgot to count as I was placing them. I was working as fast as I could. I was not sure how dense to place them. I did not want to under do it and I did not want to crowd them either. Some of the plants were pretty well developed both above and below the crown. One even had a leaf well enough developed that I could easily see the crease down the center of the leaft!!!

    Did I mention there are a LOT of plants? There are at least thirty in each of these dishes.
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    Default What to do with the chaff...

    I did not know what to call it, so chaff will have to do. I was NOT going to give up on them. I could still see decent leaves and roots in there.
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    Pot the suckers up!!! I used a slightly thinner layer of sphag, placed the plants and then lightly covered them with a layer of sphag dust. I then did a fairly aggressive spray down to wet the dust and to rince it off of the little darlings.

    What do you think? Is there a chance some will make it?

    Oh, and a little vented lid to help keep them a little more humid for a short while, a week or two maybe? Then it is out into the cold, dry world with them,
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    Wow! I think you did a fantastic job.

    When I was in college, we had an orchid club, and frequently we would deflask the university's lab orchids and put them into compots, and this is exactly the way we did it! I think that increasing humidity for them is important; we always put about 5 of them into "coke bottle" terrariums until they were large enough to survive on their own. Most of them made it, but some didn't- I think it just depends on the strength of the individual plant and how the seed developed. Deflasked orchids/compotting is an amazing feat; you have all these orchid babies to care for! I remember I would visit the greenhouse everyday just to talk to them ;-) Just watch them carefully for any signs of rot, and keep the air moving- I think you've got it down! Excellent job, and good luck!!

    ~Becky

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    I plan on spraying them down with phytan for their first spraying. I forgot to put it in the soak and sphag water.

  10. #10
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    Wow Steven, you are going to have fun keeping an eye on them. Are you planning on opening a nursery i your future?

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