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Thread: Cattleya T/C contaminated?!

  1. #1
    Smile, it makes people nervous :) MH1's Avatar
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    Cattleya T/C contaminated?!

    Hey,

    When I was in Singapore Airport a few months ago, I picked up a flasked cattleya to take home with me. Recently, I have noticed condensation on the inside of the flask, and what looks like dirt at the bottom of the gel. I have no knowlege of t/c, but to me these things seem point to the seal being broken, and that the gel/inside is no longer sterile . Is this the case? If so, how do I deflask the orchid and then grow it- media, temps, light etc etc?

    Here are some pics:

    The plant:

    The stuff at the bottom of the gel:

    The condensation:

    Should I be worrying?!

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    i dont do pots. amphirion's Avatar
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    dunno...i've seen the agar turn black before, and those orchid seedlings looked fine....
    " You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." -Inigo Montoya
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    Check google for "deflasking orchids" you should get alot of returns.

    Basically you want to open it up and carefully wash all the agar off the roots/seedling. You want to move them to about 50% of the light the adult species would like. Medium should also be similiar to the adult mix but with a smaller size medium, so things like fine bark or 1/4"-1/8" perlite. They have been in very constant medium moisture and humidity so you need to step them down to your growing conditions. High humidity and careful watering the first few weeks while they harden up some. Over the next few weeks slowly reduce the humidity and allow them to get closer to drying out. About 4-6 weeks to get them hardened up is generally my goal. Very deluted fertizilers are good also, like 10% or so of the recommended.

    I deflasked some Bulbo. frostii about a month ago and they are now in 70%ish humidity and watered every 2-3 days. In about another month they will work there way into the main grow area.

    Just be careful deflasking is addicting

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    Smile, it makes people nervous :) MH1's Avatar
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    Amp- that's reassuring! Glad I don't have to rush into de-flasking- I was worried that they would decline rapidly or something.

    RSS- Thanks for the info! I was wondering about making the soil for them at such a small size . Quite excited though haha Really don't need another hobby though! Do you have any idea how long it will take for the plant to reach flowering size?

    Thanks a lot for answering my question

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    BigBella's Avatar
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    Condensation is normal enough in "flasked" plants and the "dirt" may simply be precipitates from whatever media the nursery was using -- occasionally utilizing charcoal. The plant is still small and can remain in there for quite some time . . .
    “Sì perché l'autorità dell'opinione di mille nelle scienze non val per una scintilla di ragione di un solo . . ."

    -- Galileo "Biff" Galilei

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    Very generally it is 3-5 years from deflasking to flowering, depending on species and conditions that could be 1-2 years to 7+.

    The main problems you want to look out for if your keeping them flasked would be molds, fungus and the like. Those are generally very bad on the plants and a reason to deflask or replate (reflask into another flask).

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    Cardiac Nurse JB_OrchidGuy's Avatar
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    Oh goodness yes. You learn patience when you start doing orchdis from seed. RSS is correct in that average is 3-5 years. Some species stay 2 years in flask. Most are one. Paph rothchildianum is generaly in the 7+ cattagory. Phals are in the 1-2 year range. That is why they are cheep at the box stores like Walmart. The mass produce the clones and take only a couple years to first flower.

    Yup flasking is a delicate process. I tried it once and while I got seeds to grow i didnt have a good enough seal and they were contaminated with mold and I lost them all. I flasked them using the schools laminar flow unit and had them at home when they contaminated. No chance at a replate there. I will try again once I build my workshop and that is years away.

    Good luck with your flasklings!!
    JB
    Friend me on facebook with JB_orchidguy@yahoo.com.
    Growlist Updated 05/08/13

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    Smile, it makes people nervous :) MH1's Avatar
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    I had a feeling it might take that long! But still worth it- I really like watching things mature. I defiantly won't be able to replate- t/c is a bit too much work for me lol- guess once it outgrows the flask I'll grow it out the old fashioned way.

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