Deflasking Orchid Seedlings


Who would not covet this?

Recently I succumbed to a fit of orchid madness and bought 30 seedlings of the Dockrillia Teretifolium ‘Bridal Vail’ in a flask.  I saw a mature specimen on display at an orchid show and was smitten at once.

These are laboratory babies that arrived in a sealed plastic flask – their artificial womb that provided the perfect condition for their development.  They had been kept in sterile condition with 100% humidity and optimum temperatures in a jelly rich in nutrients.  To say that I was nervous about introducing them to the world in my bathroom basin would be an understatement.  However, this I did.


First I washed the black jelly off them in running lukewarm water then gently tease the clump of seedlings apart, lining them up on some paper towels to take a breath while I prepare a tray of 50mm pots to house them.

It was a struggle: despite their size they are wiry and wilful creatures and fought me all the way into the pots then tried to climb out again:


I think the potting mix supplied by the vendor was far too coarse and added to the difficulty of bedding them down but at last I had them in 22 pots and covered them with some cling wrap.

For the next couple of days I was obsessed with them and checked them frequently, taking photographs day and night.  The next challenge would be to take them outside.  They need to learn to sleep rough.




About Mary Tang

An urban orchardist everyday, a volunteer regularly, a poet sometimes and a blogger since March 2015. I travel when I can. Food is a constant.
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14 Responses to Deflasking Orchid Seedlings

  1. taphian says:

    They are really beautiful. I hope you will have such a lot of flowers, too. Some of my orchids are starting to bloom, too. Always a lovely sight, dear Mary. Hope you are fine, have a nice day, kind regards Mitza

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Josie says:

    Awesome blog post, hope they flourish for you

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Beautifully described, Mary. Wonderful plant. But I thought ‘orchid madness’ was your permanent condition?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. arlingwoman says:

    Oh, boy. Good luck. But I bet they are hardy little things.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sunshine Jansen says:

    The story here, and the intersection of science and nurturing and intuition, is absolutely gripping. I hope your enlightened tough love pays off!

    Liked by 1 person

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