My interest in the Genus Dendrobium lasted
around 30 years now. Even when most of the Dendrobium species
are not easy to grow and have flowers for only 10 to
20 days a year they are form me most beloved orchids
in a hobby collection.
Here I like first to show you some details of several Dendrobium growing
forms, just to teach you what you may derive from plant
size and form and structure of leaves for cultivation.
Dendrobiums with terete leaves live for example in
Australia, were they have long times of the year without
any rain. They have to store water or live only with
the humidity at night or early morning. Plants with
week and pale green leaves which seem to be very thin
are from Elevations with warmer temperatures and longer
periods of tropical rain, were they grow very fast
during this time. Most of these loose their leaves
in the dry season. There is a third group of Dendrobiums
has dark green thick leave, the stems have dark black
hairs. They must cultivated warmer and without any
resting period. Most of these orchids are from tropical
rainforests without any change of weather during seasons.
All Dendrobiums have to be grown in small pots in a
well drained substrate with pinebark, Perlite and coconut
pieces for example. But please do not change your compost
every year and do not repot the Dendrobiums every year.
They don't like such a treatment.
During growing period I fertilize the compost and the
whole plant with Orchid Focus grow fertilizer every
two weeks. In autumn I do this with Orchid Focus Bloom
every 4 weeks which means I use it 3 or for times in
autumn. This depends on the weather, sunny weather
more fertilizer, normal European weather no fertilizer.
But I think it is not necessary to change the fertilizer
to get flowers. Most Dendrobium plants will flower
after a short dry period with lower temperatures and
as much light as possible.
I cultivate all my orchids in greenhouse with lowest
temperature of 18°C at daytime during winter and
15°C nighttime during winter. Sometimes in very
cold winter night temperature falls to 12° or 10° C.
This is ok for Dendrobiums, but they have to be very
dry in pot during that temperature. And water at leaves
or in the shoots will lead to rot of them.
I grow Dendrobiums of several sections, most of Pedilonum,
some of Callista.
I will start to show Dendrobiums which are seldom seen
with two recently of Leonid Averyanow in Vietnam discovered
species, first is Dendrobium trantuanii and
second is Dendrobium vietnamense. After that
I like to show you Dendrobiums which are flowering
in my collection. Some are from Australia but most
are from Thailand to Papua New Guinea.
List of cultivated Dendrobiums with flowers
D. bracteosum alba
D. bracteosum or tanii
D. victoriae reginae
D. lawesii pink
D. lawesii red
D. violaceum var. cyperifolium
Roland Schettler after
studying theology, philosophy and biology, works
as scientist at the field of biotechnology in the
Institute of Plantbreeding, Bundesforschungsanstalt
für Landwirtschaft in Braunschweig, Germany and
also works as a high schoolteacher in Halver, Germany.
He is one of the founders of Vereinigung Deutscher
Orchideenfreunde and their president since 1995, since
1994 the Editor of Journal für den Orchideenfreund,
author of several articles and Editor of two books
in the field of orchids. Last edited The Dendrobiums
which won the Engler medal for best taxonomic book
worldwide in 2007. He is a speaker and judge at WOCs
and EOCs and advertiser of judging the WOC in Dijon,
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