Propagating orchids from seed

Steve Marak via pbs
Thu, 28 Jan 2021 19:25:24 PST
My wife does all of our flasking, and does it without a laminar flow 
hood, but it does require some care. We haven't tried any Cypripedium 
seed, even of our native C.  kentuckiense, but I have donated some to 
more sophisticated flaskers.

She, like most flaskers these days, uses plastic containers that can be 
autoclaved. Our orchid mentor continued to use actual borosilicate 
Erlenmeyer flasks until he died, and we inherited boxes of them which 
are still taking up space in our storage unit because no one wants them 
and I can't bring myself to trash good labware (and you're not supposed 
to put borosilicate glass in glass recycling). But he was old school.

There are as almost as many medium recipes out there as there are 
flaskers (we follow several orchid seed-sowing forums) and people argue, 
mostly in a friendly way, about them all the time. But at least most 
include some charcoal.

I agree with Mike's comments re Spangle Creek. I've ordered from them 
and they are great to work with and their quality is outstanding.


On 1/28/2021 7:44 PM, Tim Eck via pbs wrote:
> "My friend has told me
> they're slow and often recalcitrant even in sterile culture."
> I remember reading many years ago that you need to add charcoal to
> paphiopedilum and other terrestrial orchid agar medium because the roots
> will only differentiate toward darkness.  Give it a try.
> These days most people don't use flasks, but deli containers with saran
> wrap (which comes off the roll sterile).  Make a little laminar flow hood
> with a sweater box, a fan and a 3M filtrete filter.
> Have fun.
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