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A Vanda Experiment

This is a discussion on A Vanda Experiment within the **NOT IN BLOOM** All Genera forums, part of the Orchid Photography category; About 17 months ago I start this experiment. I would see if I could bloom ...

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  1. #1
    DoreenVDT's Avatar
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    Default A Vanda Experiment

    About 17 months ago I start this experiment. I would see if I could bloom vandas under T5 fluorescent tube. The vandas are approximates 8 inches under the tube. The light is on now for 15 or 16 hours, I started it off at 12 hours - the tube was new.

    I have yet to get a bloom from this experiment. Though conditions were good enough to develop bloom stems from the vendors I bought the vandas from. I have 10 Neofinita falcatas, a Vanda miniatum and the lone Tolumnia Pink Panther under this tube.

    The Neofinita falcatas that were potted in moss all need re-potting in moss now. Some of them are potted in the Japanese style pots, which I hope to continue. To do that is a interesting challenge.
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    They look like they are doing well. Much better then my lone Neofinitia.

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    Very nice idea. I think it will work because I have an Ascofinetia Cherry Blossom under T5 lights and it flowers like crazy every spring. It does spend the summer outdoors but it is under the lights from mid September until May so the flowers developed under the lights.

    The T5 lights didn't work for my Aerides so I moved it under a 225 W high efficiency light and that did wonders.

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    Tube wattage?

    When I was a new grower, I grew and bloomed vandas under 2 x 40 watt shop lights and 1 x 100 watt incandescent bulb, about 12" above the plants.

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    Quote Originally Posted by raybark View Post
    Tube wattage?
    The tube is cool white, the watts are 13, the fixture is 23 inches long.

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    My vandas are under HO T5 and ones that are blooming size bloom 2-3 times/year. Last summer they spent outside so one bloom cycle was outside .

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    Quote Originally Posted by DoreenVDT View Post
    The tube is cool white, the watts are 13, the fixture is 23 inches long.
    I doubt that's enough light energy for most vandaceous plants. If they were 3"-4" from the bulb, maybe, but personally, I'd recommend about 3- or 4 times that wattage.

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    Quote Originally Posted by raybark View Post
    I doubt that's enough light energy for most vandaceous plants. If they were 3"-4" from the bulb, maybe, but personally, I'd recommend about 3- or 4 times that wattage.
    I believe you are correct, Ray. I am going to re-pot them. Move them under a T8 two tube fixture, I can move that fixture up and down. It won't be as easy to keep an eye on them since it is on the top shelf of my plant stand. But it will work out better. Thank you for your advice.

  9. #9
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    How is your experiment growing? Judging from the photo of your subject plants, they do look too dark green. Neofinetia require bright light. You can tell if Vanda Alliance plants are getting enough light by how green the leaves are. The closer to light green--the better. I grow my Vandas under 4 foot long, two tubed, 5400 lumens, LED lights, about 12" above the leaves for 10 hours.

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    There is one aspect of plants that I had forgotten about mentioning: adjustment.

    If a plant has been grow under one light level - typically a greenhouse for commercially-obtained orchids - and you bring it home and place it in "lesser" conditions, such as under lights or in a window, it may very well still bloom, but it will likely take a growth cycle or two off, have fewer and/or smaller flowers, and will likely rebloom less frequently going forward.

    In addition to whatever environmental triggers the particular plant relies on to bloom, it also has to have the energy reserves to do so - those sugars and amino acids (among others) that it produces itself through photosynthesis and subsequent processes. A change in lighting may cause the plant to "wait and see" what the future may bring, and may slow the rate at which those reserves are accumulated.

    So, while we should try to give the plant what it expects in nature, the inability to do so does not absolutely mean you cannot grow and bloom them.

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