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Phalaenopsis - any way to identify the most/least cold tolerant ones?

This is a discussion on Phalaenopsis - any way to identify the most/least cold tolerant ones? within the Genus Specific forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; ...other than watching to see which ones die over Winter . It's coming into Autumn ...

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  1. #1
    Delila is offline Member
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    Default Phalaenopsis - any way to identify the most/least cold tolerant ones?

    ...other than watching to see which ones die over Winter .

    It's coming into Autumn here now, which is making me think ahead to Winter - how/where I am going to house the excessive number of orchids I bought this year . My indoor climate skirts very close to the edge of what many Phals can tolerate, with outdoor temps dropping to 11C (52F) and indoor window areas hitting 14C (57F) some mornings.

    I have grow areas that are slightly warmer than others, but not everything will fit there. I'm going to have to choose some Phals to spend Winter by those colder windows.

    My question is which ones should I choose? Are there any clues in the visible structure of the plants that could tell me which Phals are likely to be the most or least cold tolerant?

    Thanks

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    dangerouseddy is offline Junior Member
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    I think hybrid phals are more tolerant than species ones so you might want to keep the species ones warmer if you have any. otherwise im not sure how you would tell unless they dropped a leaf or 2 when cold.

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    cwcervantes is offline Senior Member
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    I don't think low or mid fifties will be an issue for most Phals so long as the roots aren't wet and the medium soggy for extended periods of time. Bright light with the cooler temps may be good to help them bloom.

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    A good point to start is the internet orchid species database, it lists every Phal species and its natural growth conditions and elevations where it comes from, good luck !

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    Hmm, that's quite a database. Because most Phals are multi-generational hybrids, I guess I was hoping that some clever person might have figured out general cold tolerance guidelines according to e.g. Leaf shape/thickness/colour, root style, flower type, etc.

    e.g. Violacea types are fairly recognisable, and I assume they have poorer cold tolerance. Certainly none have ever made it through my winters to date . So anything vaguely resembling them I will try to keep warmer...somehow!

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    I agree with the above.

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    Most should be fine at 55 F or better. I agree that hybrids are generally more tolerant.
    Good luck!

  8. #8
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    Not easy to go by leaf shape or colour, but the ones with silver mottled patterns are generally cold tolerant(we can't bloom them in the lowlands.For me in the lowlands the small floored or minis are good for the lowlands but the large whites and pinks bloom very well with temps to the lower 50 degrees F. Indeed the latter types prefer the lower temperatures. In our country commercial farms grow phals for the cut flower industry in the highlands where night temps are in the lower 50s F and day temps in the mid 70s F throughout the year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Delila View Post
    Hmm, that's quite a database. Because most Phals are multi-generational hybrids, I guess I was hoping that some clever person might have figured out general cold tolerance guidelines according to e.g. Leaf shape/thickness/colour, root style, flower type, etc.

    e.g. Violacea types are fairly recognisable, and I assume they have poorer cold tolerance. Certainly none have ever made it through my winters to date . So anything vaguely resembling them I will try to keep warmer...somehow!
    There is no general way as you expect to classify warm and cold growing plants. Databases like Orchidwiz can tell you the individual species composition of a hybrid and based on the average will predict the growth conditions, though helpful, this technique is flawed as the characteristics that are passed down from each generation to the next are variable. For eg Phal. lindenii is a cold to cool growing species with mottled foliage, this plant when hybridized to Phal. Silbergrube (equestris x celebensis) which has spotted silver foliage, produces a plant that has foliage exactly like lindenii and flowers very very similar to lindenii but this plant does very well in warm climates.

  10. #10
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    I recommend Phalaenopsis lindenii, Phal pulchra, and Phal philippinensis because they came from mountainous areas of the Philippines and do not or seldom flower in lowland cultivation. I agree with cattan, the mottled leaf species Phal schilleriana and Phal stuartiana originally thrive in lowland however their spectacular blooms only appears when grown in highland, the same with Phal sanderiana, Phal aphrodite, Phal amabilis. I don't wonder, most of these species came from the Philippines but they favor Taiwan climate. Unless you have greenhouse, stay away from Phalaenopsis lueddemanniana, Phal equestris, Phal pallens, fasciata, reichenbachiana, bastianii, hieroglyphica, mariae, micholitzii, and pallens.

    Of course all of these Phal species from the tropics are not frost-tolerant, not recommended to grown outdoors in winter.

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