I had gone to Lowe's for some pots when I decided to browse the indoor plant selection they carry here in Florida. I love see what kind of plant stock Lowe's and Home Depot carries now. It's pretty different from the selection NY gets, although just as terrible quality if left there more than a week. Just the fact that all these home improvement stores carry orchid specific supplies is pretty great, makes my life easier anyway.
Then there's the fact that I could come home with a banana plant, bird of paradise, or a citrus tree easily. I won't, though. I have less space here than I did in NY, (Isn't that a kick in the teeth?!?!) The weather is 10x better for growing most of the things I like to grow, but I found myself paring down the collection to give some away last week. It was severely disappointing that I couldn't take home the $12.98 Manihot esculenta 'Variegata' (variegated Tapioca) at Lowes yesterday. I just don't have the space to overwinter it indoors, it's supposed do fine outdoors in zone 10 and above, is zone 9a close enough? Probably not if I can't keep it in the ground.
There was a silver lining to the Tapioca Disappointment. A brand new shipment of those bag baby orchids from Better-Gro®/Sunbulb Co. Awwwww yeaaaaaa, out of all the common Cattleya and Oncidium hybrids.....Dendrobium spectabile! So I still didn't get out of there without spending $12.98 at the end of the day. I find that if you catch those shipments within the week they get there, those orchids are in decent-to-good shape. You always have to check the roots on these, so I ditched the old media, and repotted, (even though this is a bad time to repot this particular orchid, no new pseudobulbs throwing out fresh roots.) It had a surprisingly decent amount of good healthy roots, I should've taken a picture to capture the moment, (again, they must've just gotten a shipment in.)
|Dendrobium spectabile from Lowe's (Better-Gro®/Sunbulb)|
This species is reported to severely dislike repotting so I went with inorganic media (Hydroton) so I can wait until it outgrows the pot before I have to touch it again.
I previously had two recently deflasked Dendrobium spectabile 'Halcyon' x 'CAS' and babied them. This was a mistake. I lost one and figured the other wasn't far behind, so I put it in a terrarium and had a tendency to forget about it. It liked that. Since I've all but ignored my little seedling it's done better than it ever did. It's still tiny though, and has been growing slooooowly, so I'll be significantly older if I ever see it bloom.
|Recently deflasked D. spectabile 'Halcyon' x 'CAS' seedling|
As far as getting D. spectabile to bloom, the consensus seems to be stop fertilizing it in fall, and cut watering especially if it gets cold. So I'm adding this new one to my list of orchids I can practically ignore from Novermber through February. Dendrobium spectabile also has to get large, like a foot or three tall, before it blooms. Another complicated species orchid that people tend to have trouble with, a perfect addition!