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2008 Archived Messages


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MONTHDATEDATEDATEDATEMONTHDATEDATEDATEDATE
January 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 February 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-29
March 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 April 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30
May 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 June 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30
July 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31 August 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31
September 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30 October 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31
November 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-30 December 1-7 8-14 15-21 22-31

8—14 December

From: John J. Rupp
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Winter sunshine.
Date: Mon, 08 Dec 2008

Hi Roger,

You really don't want to know about Northern New York state. The
current temperature here is -2 F (-19 C) with a 20 mph (32 kph) giving a
wind chill of -20 to -30 F (-29 to -34 C). We only have about 2 inches
(5 cm) of snow on the ground, but some locations about 60 miles (96 km)
away have over 4 feet (1.2 m) of snow, and winter has not even started,
yet. I can hardly wait. I think you can easily say that during the
winter we grow inside. It is such a joy to have some blooming orchids
with a backdrop of snow drifts and blowing wind.

In this climate, I cannot afford a greenhouse, so my orchids are all
over the house: in the basement under lights, and in the living and bed
rooms in the windows to get as much light as possible. Watering has to
be done very carefully − less than in warm weather, but if a pot is
missed, it doesn't take long for it to dry out too much to be salvaged.
Bummer! On the other hand the higher humidity in the living area is
healthier for us. But with the cold walls, if he humidity gets a bit to
high, moisture will condense on the walls and can lead to ugly and
unhealthy mold formation in the coldest corners. Therefore, a nice
gently fire in the fireplace can bring the humidity down, raise the temp
a few degrees, and keep the heating bills down. However, with the lower
humidity, the plants dry out faster, and need to be watered ... and the
cycle continues.

I am always grateful when temps warm up enough in June to get all the
orchids outside. As late summer temps cool down in late September to
early October, the plants slowly start coming. The most cold tolerant
ones will have had some frost conditions by then.

My fire in the fireplace has gone out, so I think that it is time to
turn in and pull up another blanket.

Good night,

John R

Roger Grier wrote:
> Hi Paul,
>
> Thank you for the information.....very interesting, especially the
> high temps. But them I remembered you telling of the migratory path
> of the Humming birds, via your place.
>
> When I look at South Dakota and your Winter temps I shudder, but when
> I look and see that your are roughly on the same latitude as northern
> Spain, it makes sense.
>
> I wonder how John from New York State fairs???
>
> Being a huge fan of Science and Nature it often makes me wonder, in
> awe, how people in Northern climes grow their orchids??? I guess the
> answer is.....indoors.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Angraecum germinyanum
Date: Mon, 08 Dec 2008

Mornin' Nat,

Carrying on from what David has said, for my part, I would like to know what type of 'Compost' or 'Medium' your plant is growing in.

Cheers, Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: The festive season.
Date: Mon, 08 Dec 2008

Hello to you all, where ever you may be, whether you are a constant supplier of information to our 'Club', or if you just enjoy reading all about orchids.....the pitfalls and the success.

Let me wish you all a very Merry Xmas and a terrific New Year, and may all of your orchids do even better in the future.

All the best, Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Nathaniel Green
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Angraecum germinyanum
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

Roger and others,

Sorry for the delay but my wife hide my memory card reader and then the kids
had the audacity to want feeding and nappy changes!!!!

As to the medium it is large chunks of bark, this is how it arrived and not
changed any thing, now I have put it in a zip lock bag with some sphagnum
moss in the bottom to help increase humidity, I have left the top open to
help air movement. And my fingers are crossed!

Nat

Roger Grier wrote Re: [OrchidTalk] Angraecum germinyanum

> Mornin' Nat,

> Carrying on from what David has said, for my part, I would like to know what
> type of 'Compost' or 'Medium' your plant is growing in.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

Hi Nat,

Having had a good look at your Angraecum I have two things to say.

I would cross more than your fingers.....cross just about anything as I honestly think that it is on the way to the Orchid House in the sky. Maybe, just maybe, when the weather bucks up next year, you might just cut off the bottom part of the stem just below those two dead looking ones with the live root just above them. Keep it in the plastic bag with the moss and just hope that the warmer weather may just help it to grow.

The other point that I would like to make, or ask, is this, who supplied a plant looking like that???

Cheers, Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

Hi again Nat,

Forgot to say a big thank you for the excellent photos that we can look at and give our each and every diagnosis.

Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: A Pat on the Back.
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

Hi all,

I have been meaning to reply to John's [New York State] story about the weather that he gets during his Winter. The one item that tickled me was the mention of the dampness/humidity, and the mould in the corners of some rooms. Yes, it does also happen over here in the U.K.

What annoys me are the people who think that 'Double Glazing' is the magic idea that keeps our houses warm and cosy, without seeing any condensation at all. Dream on you plonkers !!!

If it is, shall we say, minus two or three outside and twenty inside, and the previous day or so it rained quite heavily you can begin to imagine what we orchid growers have to put up with.

Hence my 'Subject'. Yes we should all give ourselves a pat on the back for the numerous ways that we use to try to keep our orchids alive and happy through the Winter months.

Only eleven days to the shortest day!!!

Keep smiling, Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Dennis Read
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Miltassia
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

I am surprised that this info. did not generate any response other than Geoffs. I have difficulty in understanding the fact that an organisation orders by the thousand. I doubt that B&Q or Homebase could order yellow Phals. by the thousand. Maybe various outlets use a trader to combine their orders.
You can see how they can sell them off for a few pounds with no flowers.
I supose it is this type of grower that is putting small specialist nurseries out of busines.
Should

--- On Sat, 6/12/08, Dennis Read wrote:

> Roger, Further to my last, If you go to www.floricultura.nl and
> look under Odontoglossum alliance R you will find Miltassia Royal
> Robe 'Diplomat' for sale -- if you buy by the thousand -- !!

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: geoff hands
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Angraecum germinyanum
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

When I get one as bad as this, I add it to my compost heap ; hide the label
in the dust-bin − put it out of my mind.

Frankly , to restore this to being a good plant needs a miracle.

Sorry to sound brutal , but keeping a thing like that does nothing to
improve the appearance of your orchid collection ; never will. It's just a
reminder of past mistakes. We all make mistakes − buy bad plants , lacking
sufficient knowledge to distinguish , or through sheer bad luck . And we all
make mistakes in culture − and recognising them and finding out − as far as
possible − what we did wrong , is how we learn . But we − well speaking for
myself anyway , I don't want to rub my nose in it .

My best advice now − put it behind you, and move on.

Geoff

Nathaniel wrote RE: [OrchidTalk] Angraecum germinyanum

> As to the medium it is large chunks of bark, this is how it arrived and not
> changed any thing, now I have put it in a zip lock bag with some sphagnum
> moss in the bottom to help increase humidity, I have left the top open to
> help air movement. And my fingers are crossed!

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: David Martin
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Angraecum germinyanum
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

Hello Nat,
Looking at your plant explains why it's looking so bad. This type climbs up its host plant. It throws out new roots along the stem to hold on, and the bottom end will slowly die off. It will be impossible to keep it alive with the roots in the pot as the stem elongates. Do as Rocky says and cut it off below that root. I would make a pad of sphagnum moss and tie it on a mount. Dust the cut stem with Flowers of sulpher or cinnamon. Spray it every morning with rain water and it WILL survive.
David

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: geoff hands
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Miltassia
Date: Tue, 09 Dec 2008

But it isn t ( putting small specialist nurseries out of business)...as far as I can see, Burnham, Plesteds, Peter White ( for example) are flourishing. They have found their niche.

So has Mc Beans but it is a different niche from the one it used to occupy of filling the world with ever bigger standard cymbidiums !

I do hear that Ivens is up for sale, but suspect that is because the family business suffered a near-mortal blow when the enthusiast- Terry, died.But they certainly found a unique niche ( supplying orchids to match a paint-shades card for Mayfair Society hostesses ,so that the flowers matched the napkins and the curtains... who paid three figures for a nice plant with multi-spikes to go in the centre of the dining table, and then be thrown away a few weeks later.) . But that s the problem with small businesses, they keep going through the hard work and enthusiasm of perhaps just one man, even if he did inspire the whole family ; when he s gone, some others in the family who just worked there may be saying I ve had enough , I want out, and I want my share of the business in cash.....just guesswork on my part sorry if I m wrong !

But, looking at orchid history no orchid nursery ever did last for ever. Think of famous names in my orchid life Christine Low s nursery gone so long I have forgotten the name now, David Sander Orchids ( the species specialists) , Black & Flory five houses full of cattleyas ; Charlesworths all the specialist odont crosses they made, although in their earlier years they were big in paphs too ( P.charlesworthii anyone ? ) ; Mansell & Hatcher the orchid kings of the north of England ; Neville Orchids , with all their boasting of the magnificent inter-generics they were breeding with Guiness brewery money ; Armstrong & Brown and Laurie s perfect culture ; Bob Dadd s nursery at Weston Super Mare ( drop in and see me for a chat, bring a plant to swap and browse to find one you like...); , Stonehurst and the search for the perfect red cymbidium, Wylde Court and their Lycastes, the list goes on.( I must mention Keith Andrew, since he is President of my local Society but a nurseryman no more) ... And I m not old enough to remember Williams, the Veitch nursery , Fred Sander at St Albans, etc etc...

Even if you go to the States always ten or a hundred times as many as here, many of the famous names have gone for ever remember the California nursery breeding Phals the P.Cast Iron Monarch line for example − with Hollywood money ? Rand and his glorious Dr.Toot adverts which had us in stitches ...And do Stewarts still exist ?

It is a big bad large-scale professional world ; if little men are put out of business by the industrial production of orchids , not by the thousand but by the million ( I am not exaggerating ; over 2 million of the genuine Vuyl. Plush v. Cambria FCC/RHS were produced by meristem propagation before the successive tiny mutations made the original thing too difficult to grow and produce relatively small flowers) it s because they have not found their niche. Find your niche, and you can survive as a one man or small business.

But, to order by the thousand you have to be a Marks and Spencer I think ; they have hundreds of stores , and in my local very small Food Only (sic) branch they had, for example, about 6 or 7 plants of a superb new Burr. Nelly Isler clone when I went in today ( better than either of the clones I have but unfortunately done in Xmas wrapping with a ceramic bowl I don t want hence selling at 20 but I m still hesitating about making an excuse to go and buy something for our Xmas dinner their luxury Jersey cream and French Brandy-butter maybe ? ) just happening to pick one up on my way to the check out....they could order a thousand and send half a dozen to each store...

You did bring back a lot of memories with that remark Dennis !

Geoff

Dennis Read wrote Re: [OrchidTalk] Miltassia

> I am surprised that this info. did not generate any response other
> than Geoffs. I have difficulty in understanding the fact that an
> organisation orders by the thousand. I doubt that B&Q or Homebase
> could order yellow Phals. by the thousand. Maybe various outlets
> use a trader to combine their orders.

> You can see how they can sell them off for a few pounds with no
> flowers.

> I supose it is this type of grower that is putting small specialist
> nurseries out of busines.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: PG Hieke
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: FESTIVE SEASON
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2008

WISHING YOU ALL A MERRY XMAS

AND

A HEALTHY PROSPEROUS 2009

PETER FROM BLOUBERGSTRAND

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Alex Scott
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: Miltassia
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2008

Yes its an interesting site Dennis, looking at the price list for
odonts the cheapest is for lots of 25,000 never mind a thousand but
another interesting thing is the page on growing conditions. They
recommend min night temps of 18C which astounds me, mine are in a
lounge or window sill and it goes down to 10C. maybe I should try
and keep them hotter for best results. Regards, Alex

Dennis Read writes:

> Roger, Further to my last, If you go to www.floricultura.nl and
> look under Odontoglossum alliance R you will find Miltassia Royal
> Robe 'Diplomat' for sale -- if you buy by the thousand -- !!

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Dennis Read
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Follow on from Miltassia
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2008

Geoff, Good response. What really surprised me that I must be the only list member who did not know that orchids were sold by the thousand. I thought that all outlets bought through the Dutch Auction House. They presumably only sell the remainders.
The point I had forgotten was that I, as many others, got into orchids by buying mericloned plants and went on to an enjoyable hobby (obsession). Most of our new members started by getting a B&Q or similar orchid.
Last year The Devon Orchid Society assisted The RHS at Rosemoor on their Orchid Day. We gave two talks and the first had about 150 attendees and the second about 120. At our stand people were queing to ask questions.
Regards from a Dismal Devon. Dennis

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Miltassia
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2008

Hello Alex, Rocky calling,

Don't forget that they are Commercial Growers and their temperature
recommendations might just be to get the damned things to keel over so that
the public then go out and buy another. Please keep your Odonts down to
that 10 degrees Celsius. That temperature has always been good for my
plants.

Regards, Rocky.

"Alex Scott" wrote Re: [OrchidTalk] Miltassia

> Yes its an interesting site Dennis, looking at the price list for odonts
> the cheapest is for lots of 25,000 never mind a thousand but another
> interesting thing is the page on growing conditions. They recommend min
> night temps of 18C which astounds me, mine are in a lounge or window sill
> and it goes down to 10C. maybe I should try and keep them hotter for best
> results.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Follow on from Miltassia
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2008

Good evening Dennis,

I am so pleased to hear that your Society talks had so many people attending and asking questions. There is no substitute for getting down to the real truth when questions are asked at members of an Orchid Society. I feel sure that they will have gained much knowledge and would have gone away with peace of mind.

I shrink in horror what answers they would have got from some of the R.H.S. people.

Cold and damp here, and not nice at all.

Cheers Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Nathaniel Green
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2008

Hi Roger and Dennis,

Thank you for the slightly more positive answer just confused as to where to
cut? See picture.

Thanks again.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2008

Mornin' Nat,

I would go for option 2. That should get rid of the bottom portion of the upright rhizome which appears to be useless.

Also there would be enough length to either pot it or surround it with moss and still have a bit of clear stem before the leaves. Also, I would incorporate the good looking root in the moss.

Cheers, Rocky.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: David Martin
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2008

Hello Nat,
I would cut it at position 2 and then mount it with sphagnum moss around that root. Otherwise put it in a bag of sphagnum as Rocky suggested. The only problem with that is the new leaves might rot off if they get too wet. The third option is to throw it away, as Geoff says, but where's the challenge in that, especially if you can't replace it with another one. I do like a challenge, and have succeeded with this sort of plant before.
David.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Kenneth Bruyninckx
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2008

Nat,

I had a quick look at both pictures well I think all choices have been
presented to you.

One thing that I would suggest however is NOT to cut anything right now, do
that, if the plant is still alive in spring time IF AND ONLY IF new roots
have formed. cutting it now would be the same as sending a patient with
pneumonia outside in the cold. a sure death sentence!

Sure, new roots will not form on the dead part of the stem, but it is tricky
to say how far the stem has died. You only now by cutting it.

Looking at your potting mixture close-up, how long has it been in that pot?
Do you have this "white" stuff on other pots as well?

As David pointed out to you the bottom end will slowly die off, but you need
to interpret that as very, very slowly.
Our private collection plants are grown in baskets or pots and as opposed to
Davids plant, the growths on ours arch down due to the weight and length of
them. New growths appear along the stem. It would seem that your plant tried
to produce a sideshoot at the bottom as well, but it died/rotted for some
reason.

Kind regards,

Kenneth.

Kenneth Bruyninckx

Akerne Orchids

Laarsebeekdreef 4, B-2900 Schoten, Belgium

tel. +32 (0)3 651 40 36 fax +32 (0)3 653 06 76


www.akerne-orchids.com

Looking for orchid books and magazines? Visit www.orchidbooks.eu


-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Nat's Angraecum.
Date: Sat, 13 Dec 2008

Mornin' Nat,

What friend Kenneth said is what many people do, and I liked his advice to the 'patient'.

To be honest, I have had similar plants and I did not want to confuse you too much, but now that Kenneth has added his information I would like to say this.

And only if you have the time and deep interest.

Cut off an inch or so from the bottom of the upright rhizome, then have a look at the bottom of the remaining stem with a hand lens and see if it is dead, or has any peculiar markings. Then, if it is dead cut a bit higher and so on.

If and when you hopefully soon get into good wood, then re-establish it.

Hope this makes sense to you.

Regards, Rocky.

My water butts are full !!!!!

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: sheila bicknell
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: (Orchid-Talk) To brighten your day
Date: Sat, 13 Dec 2008

Hi Everyone − I hope you will enjoy the attached photo of my Cymbidium
Sarah-Jean, taken this morning against the background of a leaden sky in a
cold, wet and gloomy South of England. Currently flowering on 7 spikes,
with another 6 in various stages of development.
It is growing in a rockwool and foam mix, in a 10 inch pot and the leaf span
is about 3 ft / 1metre.
In answer to Geoff's question regarding cymbidium growing a few weeks ago
'is it worth tending what appear to be daffodil leaves for 9 months of the
year' − Definitely -Yes − Well I think it is, and I hope to have Cymbids in
bloom for six or seven months this season.
Regards, Sheila.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Janet Fabricant
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [Orchid-Talk] To brighten your day
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Your Cymbidium Sarah-Jean is just lovely. It is one of the orchids that I
can't grow here in southeastern Florida so enjoy so much seeing yours.
Janet Fabricant
Wirey hugs and love and xxx and licks from Janet, Bobby and Asta

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Roger Grier
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Sheila's Cymbid.
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Hello Sheila,

You sure know how to dampen a persons day.....not that we in our part of the world want any 'dampening'.

What's all of this bloody nonsense about having a Cymbid with THIRTEEN SPIKES. There's only ten digits on both hands !!!

And that surely is an accolade which you do deserve. Do I hear 'Envy' being shouted from many people.

Well done, and what a glorious Xmas present.

Cheers for now, Rodge.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: geoff hands
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [Orchid-Talk] To brighten your day
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Aha Sheila, I never had any doubts myself in December, January, February
March... but they are not just daffodil leaves then !
Seriously , I'd love to grow them again, but my conditions are quite wrong,
and I don't have room for another house- or indeed time for another house.

But congratulations on your plant − it's a winner. A good job you are not a
member of Bournemouth OS, and an attender at our annual Xmas Lunch yesterday
, when I won the trophy ( a handsome large engraved glass vase) for my
Renanthera Manila x phillipinense as best plant on display − you would have
put me in the shade .

Geoff

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Paul Johnson
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: Fine orchid weather!
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Hello Roger,

Do you think I have the adequately cool environmental temp's for my
Odont's? -: )

The photo is of our front yard and new cottage greenhouse on the left,
as of this morning. A fine blizzard today. Temp's are not too cold,
yet, hovering around zero F right now, having dropped about 10dF in
the 45 min since the photo was taken through our front window. The
fuzziness of the photo is because of the blowing snow and wind, which
has decreased a little; it is now maybe around 20-25 mph. The wind is
keeping most exposed surfaces clean of accumulating snow, but also
accumulating some drifts, with a knee-high drift across the driveway
and another blocking the G.H. I will be headed out to the G.H. after
breakfast, but do not worry, the wind chills are a balmy minus 20-30d
F right now and expected to drop a bit more as the really cold air
arrives later about mid-day.

As you can see, I never did get around to finishing the grape arbor
before the ground froze, so it is still a rectangular hole.

cheers,

Paul

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: David Martin
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [Orchid-Talk] To brighten your day
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Hello Sheila,
Your Cymbidium is even better than when I saw it at the recent OSGB meeting.
Sheila is the best grower of Cymbidiums that I know. Her greenhouse in the
Spring is just stunning.
David

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: Alex Scott
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: To brighten your day
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Your cymbidium is a real winner! do you grow them in your house and always
in rockwool?
Regards, alex

sheila bicknell writes:

> Hi Everyone − I hope you will enjoy the attached photo of my Cymbidium
> Sarah-Jean, taken this morning against the background of a leaden sky in a
> cold, wet and gloomy South of England. Currently flowering on 7 spikes,
> with another 6 in various stages of development.
> It is growing in a rockwool and foam mix, in a 10 inch pot and the leaf span
> is about 3 ft / 1metre.

-------------------------------------------------------------

From: sheila bicknell
To: Orchid Talk List
Subject: Re: [OrchidTalk] To brighten your day
Date: Sun, 14 Dec 2008

Alex − I was taught to grow Cymbidiums in a Rockwool and Foam mix (named
Epiphoam − Google it for more info and current supplier), and have continued
to do so for the past 20 years! It suits me and the way I grow my
Cymbidiums.
The plants are outside from Mid/late May until late September or early
October and then go into a greenhouse with a minimum night temperature of
between 8C/10C. Any additional day lift in the temperature dependent on
the weather/sun − or lack of it, what-ever nature provides.
Sarah-Jean has recently been brought into an unheated garden room attached
to my home for me to enjoy ! Cymbidiums will not do well in normal 'human'
living conditions which are generally much too warm, especially at night.
I do know some-one who grows and flowers Cymbidiums very well (in outer
London, which is probably a few degrees warmer than here) they are outside
from late spring until almost first frosts, then into an unheated lean-to
greenhouse, and they flower like crazy.
Regards, Sheila

"Alex Scott" wrote Re: [OrchidTalk] To brighten your day

> Your cymbidium is a real winner! do you grow them in your house
> and always in rockwool?
> Regards, alex

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