Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Unflasking the Seedlings

The flasks arrived in the mail this morning. Here's a picture of the box they came in and the two flasks--which are actually spaghetti sauce jars with a small hole in their lids, stuffed with cotton. The seedlings are in a dark grey sort of lumpy media, which is why the flasks look sort of dark.

I removed the lids from the flasks, filled them with lukewarm water and poured the water out a couple times to remove most of the grey media. Then I dumped them in a small plate and rinsed them there a little more. Now they look like this.

Then I separated them out and sorted them roughly by size. Here some are on a newspaper to give a better idea of their size.

I filled a mixing bowl with sphagnum moss, wet it thoroughly, put a layer of it in the bottom of each tray and then one by one wrapped each seedling in a bit of sphagnum and put them in one of the trays. There were about 40 seedlings per flask, some of them very very tiny. When I was done, the trays looked like this and I put them under some fluorescent lights, partially covered with a piece of saran wrap.

I'll keep them moist but not wet. I'm a bit concerned about having them all in the same large tray in case of a fungal infection and may get another tray and move half to a different location just in case. I did use brand new trays and a new bag of sphagnum.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Story of an orchid cross

On May 28th of 2007 I crossed LC Mini-Purple "Blue Hawaiian" with C Brabantiae. This is what they look like. Brabantiae is the spotted orchid and is somewhat larger than the Mini-purple.

While the pod on Branbantiae did not take, the one on Mini-purple did. It seemed to take longer to mature than the pod from a similar cross I made a few years ago, but it did mature. I sent it in for flasking on May 8th, 2008. I expect the flasks back this week.

My intention is to post images of the baby plants every week or every other week. If these bloom out like the similar cross I made, they will be pink with darker pink on the lip and a few but not all will have some spots or freckles.

Update on LED light testing

At this point, the first marigold under the fluorescent lights is beginning to flower. There are buds on the marigolds under the LED lights, but they haven't begun to open yet. In addition the stems of the plants under the fluorescent lights are a dark red, while those of the plants under the LED lights are a mix of green and pink and do not look as sturdy.