Monday, November 21, 2011

Pretty picture: Cymbidium Starbright 'Sirius'

Lots of Cymbidiums for sale lately in the stores here, but they're all super-expensive. (The cheapest I saw was $50.) This means I will probably never find out whether I can grow a Cymbidium, but that's probably okay: based on my experiences with other orchids, I suspect the answer is yes, but not well.

I really like the way they look, though.


Paul said...

Beautiful cym. Should be able to find them cheaper at an orchid show.

Cyms do have some requirements that you would have no trouble with but one you might.

Once temps warm up in the spring so days are in the upper 40's to 50's, put them outside. Harden them off to increasingly brighter light until they are getting full direct sun through as much of the day is possible. (Leaves should become a yellowish/chartreuse color.) Over the summer water and fertilize heavily.

Near the end of August, quit feeding and cut back on watering. Leave outside until hard frosts. Then bring in at night putting them in a chilly spot or put them in the garage overnight. By day ... back outside. The cool temps are needed to initiate spiking.

When temps are regularly around freezing (end of November early December) then it's time for them to come in. Here's the hard part ... give them a cool but very bright spot.

Once flowers open you can move them to a warm spot though the flowers will last longer in a cooler space. Flowers typically last a couple months.

orchideya said...

Very pretty blooms. Large size of the plants was holding me back from trying cyms, but after some research I found couple fragrant species that stay quite compact. They are on my wish list and I will look for them when spring comes and shipping resumes here.

mr_subjunctive said...


Yeah, the "cool but very bright spot" requirement pretty much makes these a no-go for me, then. The husband has put a tremendous amount of work into insulating the house, with the goal of keeping it all roughly the same temperature.[1] I doubt I'm ever even going to rebloom the Clivia: too warm.

I don't remember looking specifically at the prices for the Cymbidiums at the show, but I remember the general feeling that the prices were not that much of an improvement over what I saw at garden centers, or not enough of an improvement to make them affordable, at least.

Lowe's occasionally has Cymbidiums in the $20 neighborhood.


[1] The plant room is a bit cooler in winter and warmer in summer; some of the other rooms, like my office, are the opposite. But everything is pretty much in the 65-75F range all the time, because there are too many plants here that would object if it got colder (and because I object when it gets warmer).

Helen said...

They are gorgeous. I have the coolth for that type of culture, but not the consistency in the care department. If they crossed an orchid with an aspidistra, I might be fine.

Keith said...

Very expensive here too, so mine are all bought after the flowers are gone and they are heavily discounted (up to 75%).

They really are easy to grow - put them outdoors in the shade in spring and leave out until night temps threaten to dip down to about 5 deg celsius. Oh, chuck some water at them too when you remember!

Julie said...

Now this is an orchid I could love. Normally they do not appeal to me at all. I saw another orchid once and the bloom was chocolate colored...never seen one since...but I just dream about finding one again in the future! This would have to be my second favorite after the brown one!

pp said...

very beautiful Cym. once temps warm up in the spring so days are in upper 45's to50's, put them outside near august ending