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ORCHID SPECIES CULTURE Charles and Margaret Baker Phalaenopsis lobbii Sweet AKA: Phalaenopsis decumbens var. lobbii, Phalaenopsis listeri, Phalaenopsis parishii var. lobbii. ORIGIN/HABITAT: Eastern Himalayas. The habitat occurs in Bhutan as well as the Indian states of Assam and Sikkim in foothills at 1200-1500 ft. (366-457 m). Also found near Darjeeling in the Khasia hills and in Burma near Nampakon. Plants grow on especially rough-barked trees with decaying material filling the deep fissures where the roots grow. CLIMATE: Station #42398, Baghdogra, India, Lat. 26.7N, Long. 88.3E, at 412 ft. (126 m). Temperatures are calculated for an elevation of 1300 ft. (396 m), resulting in probable extremes of 101F (38C) and 33F (0.6C). N/HEMISPHERE JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC F AVG MAX 71 74 82 87 87 86 86 86 85 84 79 74 F AVG MIN 47 51 57 65 70 73 74 74 73 67 57 50 DIURNAL RANGE 24 23 25 22 17 13 12 12 12 17 22 24 RAIN/INCHES 0.3 0.7 1.3 3.7 11.8 25.9 32.2 25.3 21.2 5.6 0.5 0.2 HUMIDITY/% 73 68 57 58 74 84 86 85 85 79 75 76 BLOOM SEASON * * ** DAYS CLR @ 6AM 21 18 15 11 5 0 1 1 4 13 23 19 DAYS CLR @ 12PM 23 16 16 11 2 2 0 1 2 10 21 18 RAIN/MM 8 18 33 94 300 658 818 643 538 142 13 5 C AVG MAX 21.7 23.4 27.8 30.6 30.6 30.0 30.0 30.0 29.5 28.9 26.1 23.4 C AVG MIN 8.4 10.6 13.9 18.4 21.1 22.8 23.4 23.4 22.8 19.5 13.9 10.0 DIURNAL RANGE 13.3 12.8 13.9 12.2 9.4 7.2 6.7 6.7 6.7 9.4 12.2 13.3 S/HEMISPHERE JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN Cultural Recommendations: LIGHT: 1200-1800 fc. Plants are more tolerant of higher light than most Phalaenopsis species. TEMPERATURES: Summer days average 85-87F (30-31C), and nights average 70-74F (21-23C), with a diurnal range of 12-17F (7-9C). The plants are unusually tolerant of temperature extremes. HUMIDITY: 75-85% during the summer. WATER: Plants should be kept moist during the growing season. The rainfall pattern is wet/dry. FERTILIZER: 1/4-1/2 strength, applied weekly during the growing season. Phalaenopsis lobbii is healthiest if given frequent feedings during the short growing season. REST PERIOD: Days average 71-82F (22-28C), and nights average 47-57F (8-14C), with a winter diurnal range of 22-25F (12-14C). Night temperatures frequently approach 40F (4C) during the dry winter, when humidity falls below 60%. A 2-4 month cool, drier rest with increased light is necessary for blooming and plant survival. Water should be reduced to occasional misting, but humidity should be sufficiently high to prevent dehydration of the leaves. Fertilizer should be eliminated during the dry period. As temperatures cool, the plants require less moisture. In the habitat, the period of low rainfall is extremely long, but except for 2 months, the humidity levels indicate frequent fog and morning dew. In addition, the decaying material around the roots in the plant's natural habitat helps collect and hold additional moisture during the dry season and increases nutrient levels during the growth period. GROWING MEDIA: 1/2-5/8 in. (12-16 mm) fir bark. Repotting is best done in early spring, immediately after flowering. Unless the roots are damaged, they should not be trimmed when repotting. In nature, they grow to great lengths over the host tree, continuing to elongate and branch with age. Plants also grow well when slabbed on cork or tree fern, providing high humidity is maintained. MISCELLANEOUS NOTES: N/A. Plant and Flower Information: PLANT SIZE AND TYPE: A small, monopodial epiphyte. LEAVES: 1-2 per plant, occasionally more. The elliptical leaves, which are 4-5 in. (10-13 cm) long, may be deciduous in nature. INFLORESCENCE: 4 in. (10 cm) long. Inflorescences are usually slender and suberect. Healthy plants may produce more than a single spike. FLOWERS: 4-5 per inflorescence. The blooms develop sequentially. Each blossom lasts about a month if kept cool, so several are open at a time. The blossoms are 1.0 in. (2.5 cm) or less across, fleshy, creamy white, and star-shaped. The semicircular lip is white, marked with 2 wide, vertical brown bands. HYBRIDIZING NOTES: N/A. REFERENCES: Pradhan, U. C. 1977. The natural conditions of Phalaenopsis mannii and Phalaenopsis parishii (with notes on their jungle mimics). Orchid Digest 41(3):94-97. Pradhan, U. C. 1979. Indian orchids: guide to identification and culture. Vols. I-II. Udai C. Pradhan, Kalimpong, India. Sweet, H. R. 1972. Observations on the genus Phalaenopsis. Part X, Phalaenopsis cornu-cervi and Phalaenopsis mannii. Orchid Digest 36(5):167. Sweet, H. R. 1980. The genus Phalaenopsis. The Orchid Digest, Inc., 1739 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada, CA, U. S. A. 91011. Copyright 1998, Charles O. Baker and Margaret L. Baker Sheet version 27150302 ......................................................................... Please remember that this sheet is for your use only, and though it was provided free of charge, it may not be reproduced or retransmitted in any way without permission. ......................................................................... __________________________________________________________________________ "Orchid Species Culture" Charles & Margaret Baker, Portland, Oregon USA Orchid Culture & Pollination site http://www.orchidculture.com email <firstname.lastname@example.org> __________________________________________________________________________ "Orchid Species Culture Vol. 1 - Pescatorea, Phaius, Phalaenopsis, Pholidota, Phragmipedium, Pleione" 250 pages of culture information. "Orchid Species Culture Vol. 2 - Dendrobium" 850 pages of culture information for more than 1230 Dendrobium species. "The genus Paphiopedilum--Natural History and Cultivation" - Part 1 Dr. Guido Braem, Charles and Margaret Baker ISBN 0-9665337-0-4 Full page color photograph of each species. "The genus Paphiopedilum--Natural History and Cultivation" - Part 2 Dr. Guido Braem, Charles and Margaret Baker ISBN 0-9665337-1-2 Full page color photograph of each species. "Orchid Species Culture Vol. 3 - The Laelia/Cattleya Alliance" coming in a few months. __________________________________________________________________________