AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Read more of cultivation of Oeceoclades gracillima (Schltr.) Garay & P.Taylor
Culture:
Light:
2000-3000 fc. Light should be filtered or diffused, and plants should not be exposed to direct midday sun. Strong air movement should be provided at all times.
Temperatures:
Summer days average 81-83F (27-27C), and nights average 68F (20C), with a diurnal range of 13-15F (7-8C).
Humidity:
80-85% for most of the summer into early autumn. Averages then drop to near 65% in winter and early spring.
Water:
Rainfall in the region is heavy in summer and early autumn, but averages then fall quickly into a dry season that extends for 6-7 months from midautumn through the following spring. Cultivated plants should be watered heavily and be allowed to dry out completely while actively growing. Water should be reduced after growth is completed, however.
Fertilizer:
1/4-1/2 recommended strength, applied weekly when plants are actively growing. Many growers prefer to use a balanced fertilizer throughout the year; but others use a high-nitrogen fertilizer from spring to midsummer, then switch to one high in phosphates in late summer and autumn.
Rest period:
Winter days average 77-78F (25-26C), and nights average 62-64F (17-18C), with a diurnal range of 14-15F (8C). Water should be reduced after growth is completed and the plants kept almost dry until new growth starts in spring. Fertilizer should be eliminated until heavier watering is resumed.
Growing media:
Bechtel, Cribb, & Launert (1980) recommended growing the Oeceoclades species in a medium comprised of equal parts of peat, loam, and sand. A mix of 1/3 fine fir bark, 1/3 perlite, 1/6 sand, and 1/6 peat moss should also work well. Fertilizer must be faithfully applied, however, since few nutrients are available from these mediums.
References:
This information is quoted from a Charles and Margaret Baker culture sheet, with permission from Troy Meyers This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The entire culture sheet can be obtained by subscription from Orchid Species Culture, http://orchidculture.com