Saturday, October 11, 2008

Pretty picture: Dendrobium 'Karen'

Though I have not yet succumbed to the lure of the orchids, I'm thinking it's really likely to happen eventually, because I've more or less settled on a genus to covet. Phalaenopsis are pretty, but I've become a little jaded about them; I see them all the time and it takes a pretty extreme specimen to turn my head now. And Beallara, Spathoglottis, Laeliocattleya, Bakerara, Zygoneria, Degarmoara or Paphiopedilum are all amazingly gorgeous, but I don't have a lot of confidence in my abilities to grow any of those. So I've been leaning toward the Dendrobiums, which are supposedly easy to grow but still more unusual than Phalaenopsis.

Dendrobium is super-especially appealing now, since they're all beginning to bloom. I sort of prefer 'Hollywood,' truth be told, but 'Karen' is currently the most spectacular one we've got:

I'd be willing to accept either.


Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

Oh yeah! I've had a Dendrobium growing in my living room for the past year, maybe more. I thought it would be tough to grow but it's been surprisingly easy to care for. And on top of it all, the darn thing even bloomed for me again a few weeks ago! I'm so proud...

Yes, yes, go for it! Start with one and see how it goes. You won't be disappointed.

Anonymous said...

It's a nice plant--and a way cool name ;-)--but I prefer Hollywood, too.

Anonymous said...

Well, well. Just in time to 'muddy the waters' a bit.

Don't be too quick to write off the other orchids and focus on dens. What it will come down to is your personal growing conditions. For my part, I find Dens to be quite difficult to rebloom though I have friends who think they're the easiest thing on the planet. Phals are seem to be easy for many folks yet a member of my os who has paphs and phrags growing so robustly that they are threating to stage a coup and take over his house, can't grow a phal to save his life. I have a lot of mini and compact catts partly because I love the colors but also because they generally grow and bloom well for me. So.......

My suggestions:
1) After figuring out the conditions you can provide, try to choose an orchid or two from different genera and see what grows best for you.

2) Don't be discouraged if a chid croaks -- everyone seems to kill one sooner or later. (zjust remember that OVERWATERING is the most common cause of orchid demise.

3) Make your first plant(s) blooming sized plants -- preferably in bloom. Seedlings while cheaper are often more delicate and may take years to reach blooming size. Also on the off chance that the plant dies, buying one in bloom at least allows you to enjoy the flowers for a while. (And even if it does die, it will still last longer and likely be cheaper than a vase of cut flowers.)