Dendrobium bracteosum x tanii (2.5” pot near blooming size)
New! This is a wonderful little Dendrobium that stays very compact and blooms for months each year. Den. bracteosum is a warm growing species from near sea level in New Guinea. Den. tanii is a plant of unknown origin that flowered in the collection of a Mr. Tan in Bangkok Thailand. It has not been found in the wild. Our own bit of speculation is that it is a natural hybrid between Den. bracteosum and Den. capituliflorum which also occurs in coastal New Guinea. As evidence we note that it has a shorter growth habit, a more “bristly” flower cluster, and that it starts its annual flowering earlier in the year than Den. bracteosum typically does, right at the time when the flowering season overlaps between the two species in question. Whether true or not, if you were going to make a hybrid between the two, Den. tanii is exactly what we would expect the outcome to be. Both species belong to the section Calyptrochilus, a group that is “gradually deciduous.” Short leafy growths with swollen bases and slender tips gradually shed their leaves once mature, and in the meantime, other growths are in progress so there are always some leafy growths. Flowers occur in tight clusters on mature and usually fully bare growths. The clusters of long lived pink to pinky-purple blooms have red or orange lip in their center. It can take a couple of months just for the cluster, once formed, to fully open all its blooms, which then go on to last a couple more months at least. Even very small growths only one inch tall can flower, but eventually the plant will be about 6 to 8 inches tall, and each year the show of blooms will get better. Expect buds to start forming in spring and last well into fall. The plants we are offering are reaching flowering size now and most should bloom for the first time in 2022. While only in 2.5” pots, we recommend keeping this orchid very tightly potted and only repotting to a slightly larger container when overcrowded for best health and flowering. Medium light levels and sufficient, and watering should be on a regular basis year-round with only slight drying in between. This is a great plant to grow under LED lights as well.
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