Cymbidium dayanum (4” pot blooming size)
New! This fascinating species comes from a widespread habitat that includes Southeast Asia, Indonesia and the Philippines and seems to be adaptable to a variety of temperatures. The robust, grassy leaved plants quickly form tight clumps and can produce many spikes of arching to pendant flowers in later summer to early fall. The photo shows a first blooming seedling from last year. Now the plants have nearly filled the pots and will produce 5 or more spikes this blooming season. We recommend after flowering that you step them up to 6 inch pots to accommodate the new growth. If you have a tall Cymbidium pot to use it will help take into account the flowering habits in the future, or when budding you can simply elevate the pot or slip it into a hanging basket to enjoy the floral profusion. There are numerous awards for plants of this species with hundreds of flowers open at once. While the individual flowers are only about two inches from top to bottom, each spike can carry 10 to 12 at once. They have a white to cream background with a prominent red stripe running down the center of each segment, and a red lip with bright yellow in the center. Cymbidiums are mostly terrestrial species with larger root systems and more access to nutrients than most commercially available orchids, which are usually found growing on trees. So, use a deeper pot and richer mix (supplement fine or medium orchid bark with compost, for example) when repotting. During the growing season this species likes copious water, so you can set the pot in a saucer and allow a small amount of water to remain after each watering. In winter, the plants rest, and can use less water, though they do not want to totally dry out. These are not small plants, but can be treated more like a houseplant than most orchids. They could go out on a patio or sun porch in dappled bright light for the entire frost free period in your area, then come in to a bright window for the winter months, when as long as you continue to water, they will not be picky about the lower humidity at that time.
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