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It's only August, but winter is coming

This is a discussion on It's only August, but winter is coming within the New Growers: Ask the Senior Members forums, part of the New Growers category; I was sitting here enjoying my flowering orchids, and I got to thinking--many of these ...

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  1. #1
    Mehera's Avatar
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    Default It's only August, but winter is coming

    I was sitting here enjoying my flowering orchids, and I got to thinking--many of these may be out of bloom when I need them the most--in the bleak days of winter, say January through March. I have learned the hard way not to order plants during the cold months, so thought I would plan ahead and sent for some before the weather gets cold.

    The thing is, what to order? I'm hoping you experienced folk will have some great suggestions of orchids that flower during that time of the year. My other parameters are 1) Fairly dry despite room humidifier 2) South exposure room also with east and west windows 3) This house is chilly in the winter--prob 60* at night and days between 60 and 75, depending on whether the sun is out. We have lots of sunny days in the winter. 4) I like easy blooming and growing plants with flowers that last a long time.

    I am currently doing pretty well with phals and oncids of many kinds. Have a few catts--mostly successful, and paphs (which are spiking) and a few phrags (which have not rebloomed so far).

    Any ideas for me? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Piper's Avatar
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    Paphs would also do well in your conditions, but they'd have to turn you on. Otherwise, you have the major genera I'd suggest.

    Hoa has posted several wonderful threads to consider with fall and winter-blooming Catts:

    http://www.rv-orchidworks.com/orchid...ead.php?t=3717

    http://www.rv-orchidworks.com/orchid...ead.php?t=3756

    He keeps updating the second one, so only the first few pages will be in the season you want.

    As for Oncs and Phals, there are so many that bloom in that season, and they themselves can get screwed up internal clocks. My Odontobrassia Kenneth Bivin, which has been a reliable bloomer in December for years, is now in spike! Go figure!

    I'd suggest haunting a few good growers' sites in the fall and look for large plants in spike. If the vendors are reliable, that's a great way to get a large plant in spike. Otherwise, if you search for a particular plant, you may only be able to locate a small seedling.

    Good luck!

    Julie

  3. #3
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    we're in our winter and what i am seeing a lot of at the shows are:-

    1. Bulldog Paphs

    2. early flowering Cymbidiums (including a couple of minis)

    3. Masdevallias

    4. Phalaenopsis

    5. Intergenerics (ie Oncidium/Odontoglossum hybrids)

    what is great about being on the other side of the world from y'all is that i can see what you have flowering at what time and know when to expect my plants to bloom!

    Happy finding those new orchids!

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    Hmmmm--looks like some homework is in order. Good approach Julie; I will feast my eyes on Hoa's pictures and get some ideas. And it does make sense to ask for spiking plants in the fall.

    And Tim--I never before considered Masdevallias for myself. I have been looking around on the web since you said that, and they are really beautiful orchids. I can meet most of the conditions--certainly have altitude and cool temps and I already use rainwater when I can. High humidity would be a definite problem, and it seems they have a rep of being difficult, too.. But I'm intrigued....

    Anybody grow them?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bench72
    we're in our winter and what i am seeing a lot of at the shows are:-

    1. Bulldog Paphs

    2. early flowering Cymbidiums (including a couple of minis)

    3. Masdevallias

    4. Phalaenopsis

    5. Intergenerics (ie Oncidium/Odontoglossum hybrids)

    what is great about being on the other side of the world from y'all is that i can see what you have flowering at what time and know when to expect my plants to bloom!

    Happy finding those new orchids!
    you forgot all the mini cats as well

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    Species Phals should do well in your conditions or primary hybrids.
    Colour & scent.
    Flowers can last over 3 months on some , my Phal Sweet Memory "Bubbles" only had 1 flower for it,s first blooming but it,s still going strong after 4 months.
    Phal bellina flowers sequenntially 1 or 2 flowers @ a time & it does not seem to be a fussy grower.
    Colmanara Wildcatts(Odontcidium or whatever they are called now) can be spectacular , very easy growing & flower as new PB,s mature.I have 4 & 1 or more is always in bloom.
    It seems from my experience that Phals that have waxy flowers seem to last longer & also maybe better suited to lower humidity situations.

  7. #7
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    Thanks uncasteeb! We're on the same page: I have been enjoying my P. hieroglyphica (just a baby) and P. schilleriana (currently in spike), as well as casting a covetous eye toward the bellina pics ya'll have been posting. And I have 2 Wildcats (one about to bloom its longest spike so far)--which were my first oncids. These have been very successful here. Now if they would just cooperate and bloom Jan-March!

    Oh--and I just took delivery on a Enc. cochleata--which some say can bloom year round. Anyone grow that one? How about Maxillaria (I have been looking at those, too.)?

  8. #8
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    I'll only add that I think cymbidiums would work well, although in Sept - Nov. they need cooler than 60 at night to ensure setting spikes. This can be accomplished by setting them out at night as long as it is not so cold that it frosts (or snows), or you can set them in your garage at night as I presume it would be cooler than the house. (Just don't freeze them... ) Try to find ones listed as early bloomers, and then enjoy! The flowers last for months, some are fragrant, and the range of colors is amazing. And they make an attractive foliage plant the rest of the year.

  9. #9
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    Cymbidiums! I was under the impression that they were out for me because they had to have some outside time to do well (our summer nights are rarely above 45* and I am sitting here watching the birds eat my deck flowers; soon it will be the chipmunks--so I don't really want to put orchids outside).

    But I do always admire Cymbidiums! It would be wonderful if they had a chance here!

  10. #10
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    Well a very common one that is easy to bloom, (though it is a summer bloomer) is golden elf. It has a wonderful fragrance and is beautiful. Lots of yellow blooms. You might try it. Like Diane said, they are pretty even when not in bloom.

    Cheers!
    BD

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