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Cattleya dowiana seedling culture

Discussion in 'Orchid Culture' started by DaveH_SF, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. DaveH_SF

    DaveH_SF Member

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    San Francisco
    I have a few Cattleya dowiana seedlings, with leaves about 1" to 2" on about 3-4 baby pseudobulbs. They're mounted on cork with a bit of sphagnum. They're in a greenhouse that's 75-80F days and 55-60F nights. I'm trying to figure out the best culture for them. I've read that C. dowiana likes to dry out quickly, but I also understand that seedlings in general like to be more most. So how much should I water them? Also, for orchid seedlings in general, do they need much night time temperature drop since flowering is at least a couple years away? Would they do better with a heating mat on a timer at night to keep them at about the same temperature as during the day?
  2. DPfarr

    DPfarr Well-Known Member

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    Sacramento, CA
    Even past the seedling stage, they suffer quick deaths. It is my experience that not drying out (the foliage) before night is not preferable. The same with night temperatures in the seedling phase.
  3. Marni

    Marni Well-Known Member Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Santa Rosa, CA
    Past the first couple of weeks, I usually treat seedlings just out of flask much the same as the adult plants. During the first weeks I try to keep the humidity high so they have a chance to adjust. In general I find that a community pot where they are planted rather close together (rather than individual pots or mounts) gives me much better results. In the case of plants that like to dry between waterings, I use a bark mix (fine bark for very young seedlings and medium bark for larger seedlings) that holds moisture for awhile and then dries rather than sphagnum.