Odds and Sods


​​Seasonal Notes
​   It's January now. It was a cool wet fall here this year. At this time of year daytime temperatures are fluctuating around the freezing mark with occasional rain and  light snow.  Again check that the soil is properly covering the dormant 'eyes' which will become next year's growths. The Cyps are totally  hardy and tolerate freezing temperatures. What will effect them is desiccation by cold dry air. So make sure there is some protection. With some Cyps the dormant eyes remain just below the soil surface. However, some may be visible just above, so use a light mulch of leaf litter, pine needles etc. I emphasize a 'light layer' of mulch so you don't attract rodents. Lightly top dress your plants with additional soil if needed. 

    Check out the videos or feel free to email us with any questions you may have. If you are growing in pots, tidy up the old growths. I place the pots in an old refrigerator. A cold frame, unheated garage, etc., will also work well. Pots can even be sunken into the ground. Make sure the pots don't become too dry, or too wet if outdoors and exposed to melting snow and winter rain because the water can concentrate or pool in the pots.  Also, a refrigerator will act like a desiccator so make sure the soil doesn't dry out. 

    Seed pods have been harvested, that's another topic.... coming soon with photos.  We are currently placing customers on the 'reserved' list for spring and fall.  Shipping is over for 2018, a special thanks to all who placed orders. 



Phragmipediums

   Phragmipediums are another favourite of mine. A wonderful and diverse genus of slipper orchids. I'm currently building a collection of select Phrags.  And yes I'm working on  flasking them too. In time, divisions and seedlings will become available. I'm having particular success growing Phrag. fischeri and Phrag. kovachii.  

    The potting mix I'm using for Phrag. kovachii and Phrag. fischeri is a mixture of modified 1.5" rock wool cubes, coarse perlite,
and crushed oyster shell. I take the 1.5" rockwool cubes and cut each one into four equal cubes. Place the cut cubes in a bowl, soak and rinse thoroughly with water. Start by placing a layer of perlite in the bottom of the pot. Scatter the rockwool cubes, with gaps so they don't touch, then add perlite  to fill in the gaps. Sprinkle a little crushed oyster shell and fill the pot, layer by layer, in and around the plant's roots. Sprinkle a little more oyster shell on top and your done.  This creates a nice open mix with good drainage.

    I use reverse osmosis water, which is adjusted to a pH of 7.8 using baking soda. I water about twice/week. As the rock wool cubes dry out you'll notice them change slightly in appearance,  which will tell you when to water.  For me, the key, regardless of your potting mix is to provide calcium,  and water with a pH of approximately 7.5-7.8. 




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Awards

  • Cypripedium flavum 'A Bloom'n Addiction' CHM/AOS
  • Cypripedium henryi 'A Bloom'n Addiction' CHM/AOS
  • Phragmipedium besseae var. flavum 'Lemon Sparkles' AM/AOS

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VIDEO GALLERY
  1. Display at a German garden show with 46 different hybrids.
  2. How to divide a big clump.
  3. Planting.
  4. Garden example .