Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Phalies: a grocery store phenomenon or a cultural icon?

Dtps. Chain Xen Pearl x Dtps. Zuma Pixie. Phalaenopsis and their close cousins, the Doritaenopsis (Dtps. = Phal. x Doritis), have become the darlings of the potted plant world. The flowers can last upwards of 3 months and they now come in a plethora of vivid colors. They are amazingly available for as little as $8 in bloom, a feat enabled by mass production and hybridization of these little jewels in Taiwan. The local commercial hybridization of these plants has largely succumbed to foreign imports.

The two biggest questions for these durable little plants are a) when to water? [water about once a week or when the media has dried out]; and b) how do I get it to bloom again? [a 10 degree F drop in temperature will normally precipitate a new bloom spike. The old spike may also be left on and will sometimes generate side branches.]

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