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Cal Orchids and Lycaste

Discussion in 'Orchid Vendor FYI' started by orchidnick, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. orchidnick

    orchidnick Member

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    Southern California, USA
    Cal Orchids has a nice selection of Japanese bred Lycaste hybrids. I bought some unbloomed ones a little while ago, 3 bloomed, a very nice large red, an excellkent pink and a mediocre one. Went back a couple of days ago and approached this from a different perspective. There must have been about 50 plants in bloom and I cherry picked the best 5 I could find. No mediocre ones in that bunch, one is a dead ringer for an excellent skinneri alba even though it is a hybrid. My Guatamalen in-laws fell an their knees and worshiped that one when they saw it.

    These are 5 plus generation hybrids, 95% skinneri, a little cruenta and longiscapa 5 or 6 generations ago mixed in. They look like skinneri in all different colors. They are all seedlings, he has about 30 plus crosses. The seedling variation is strongly evident, plants with identical name tags can have different color/size/quality flowers. I don't think I will buy any more unbloomed plants, the way to do this is to physically go there and cherry pick amongst the ones in bloom. Buying them using the names on the webpage does not make much sense as you have no idea what you will end up with, the variations are pronounced. Most of his plants have buds, the next couple of month should produce a plethora of flowers to look at. I think I will go there 4 to 5 weeks apart once or twice more to cherry pick some additional ones.

    One disadvantage is that the cherry picker in chief gets first crack at them. There was a white one I really wanted, he would not sell it, wants to get it awarded first. If you buy 'Pig in a Poke' style you may get lucky and get outstanding ones. Cherry picking will get you excellent plants, avoid the mediocre ones but the award quality ones will have been culled. Getting past the cash register with top quality, outstanding plants is also a little more painful than buying unbloomed ones although I found James quite accomodating

    Definitely worth a stop if you happen to be in SOCAL.