The orchid from bird to maturity (phase 3)

From birth to maturity

The search for perfection requires patience. Breeders produce thousands of new hybrids every year. The period from the initial selection to the inclusion of an orchid in the range covers some 8 to 10 years. So it takes a while before a particular orchid variety ends up in the living room!

This year we will follow the orchid from selection through to cultivation into a beautiful mature plant. We would like to use video images to show how the orchid is born and grows into a magnificent houseplant. 

Phase 3: leaf and bud formation

Up to now the orchid has been pampered at a temperature of around 28 degrees centigrade and high humidity up to 90%.

But in order to encourage the formation of buds, the temperature now drops to around nineteen degrees. And the food supply is also adjusted - there’s less of it.

This punishing regime has a clear goal. The plant notices that it’s not doing as well, and nature kicks in. The plant makes sure it has progeny. The young branches - on which the flowers will appear later - shoot upwards. Experts call those ‘pokers’. After about eight weeks they are between 10 and 15 centimetres long.

The men who appear midway through this film are there for a reason. Every crop is slightly different. More or less water? Temperature up or down a tad? Every grower is focused on getting more and larger flowers on a branch.