What Dendrobium orchids are easiest to grow at home?

Answer

Dendrobium is a particularly large genus of more than a thousand, mostly epiphytic species originating in tropical to subtropical Asia, the Pacific and Australia. Encompassing warm-, intermediate- and cool-growing orchids, care requirements for Dendrobium are as diverse as their places of origin. The American Orchid Society divides Dendrobium into 41 Sections. 

Hard cane Dendrobium include the Den. section Phalaenanthe and Den. section Spatulata (syn. Ceratobium) orchids as well as their hybrids. These profuse-blooming plants, derived from species from the hot, lowland, tropical forests of Asia, are some of the easiest Dendrobium to grow in the home, though light conditions in the northeast can be a challenge.

Hard cane Dendrobium have tall, narrow pseudobulbs, large showy flowers and dark, evergreen leaves. They are warmth, light and humidity loving orchids and while the care of this group is not entirely uniform, some general care parameters are summarized in our Guide to Hard Cane Dendrobium Culture.

What you should know:

  • they require extended, very bright light to remain vigorous and produce flowers, especially in summer when canes are forming. In the New York City area, a south-facing window with a shear, filtering curtain is often best or an east or west window with extended light. 
  • these orchids need generous water when actively growing and reduced water in the coldest months. 
  • a minimum of 40% relative humidity is required to grow hard cane Dendrobium. You can use a simple hygrometer to assess the humidity and keep it in the 50+% range that Dendrobium prefer.
  • hard cane Dendrobium prefer day temperatures between 70 and 85°F, with night temperatures between 60 and 70°F.  If exposed to a drop in temperature below 60°F, a hard cane Dendrobium can lose its leaves.
  • Dendrobium has a greater need for nutritional supplementation than most orchids.
  •  a brief and gentle lowering of temperature within its preferred range can help the plant to produce buds. Restricting water and fertilizer in the winter months (reduce by about 20 to 30%) will help trigger flowering.
  • Keep your Dendrobium's container relatively tight around its small roots for best flowering.

Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service

  • Last Updated Jan 07, 2023
  • Views 22
  • Answered By Leslie Coleman

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