Cattleya is a perennial herb that belongs to the Orchidaceae family and is related to the genus Laelia. The genus Cattleya unites about 40 species, among which there are both lithophytes (plants that grow on stones) and epiphytes (growing on other plants).
This plant is one of the most spectacular orchids. It appeared on the territory of Europe in the nineteenth century and almost immediately fell in love with a huge number of flower growers. Cattleya was named after William Cattley, who was a plant importer and gardener who was able to grow this orchid in his own greenhouse. This plant differs from other orchids in that it has a lip of a very unusual shape, while it and the flower itself are painted in contrasting colors. A blooming orchid looks just great, it happens that about 10 flowers bloom on an adult bush. They can be painted in a variety of shades: from dark purple (almost black) to snow white. The flowers smell just magical. They can have the smell of lily of the valley or lily, and some species and varieties have an excellent incomparable aroma.
Brief description of cultivation
- Bloom... The Cattleya plant is flowering beautifully.
- Illumination... The flower needs direct sunlight before noon and after 16 hours. In the period from May to August, the orchid is placed on the southern windowsill (shaded from midday), and from August to May - on a southwestern or eastern window.
- Temperature regime... It grows well at a temperature typical for a living room. When preparing a bush for flowering, a difference between night and day temperatures of 5-7 degrees is needed.
- Watering... During the growing season, the orchid is watered as the potted substrate dries. Avoid getting water droplets on the bush. During the dormant period, watering should be more rare, while switching to moistening the surface of the substrate from a spray bottle. As soon as the peduncle appears, watering should be resumed.
- Air humidity... The flower is systematically moistened with a sprayer and occasionally given a warm shower.
- Fertilizer... Cattleya needs to be fed during the growth of the pseudobulb, after which the plant is stopped fertilizing. Fertilizers are reintroduced into the substrate after the appearance of the peduncle. Use a complex mineral fertilizer for orchids.
- Dormant period... As a rule, in autumn or winter time after the bush has faded. During this period, it is not fed, but instead of watering, the surface of the substrate is sprayed. The flower needs bright light, while the daylight hours should be long (it is recommended to install additional artificial lighting).
- Transfer... Most often, the bush is transplanted if the soil mixture in the pot sours and cakes. A flower transplant is extremely poorly tolerated.
- Reproduction... By shoots and division of the bush.
- Harmful insects... Aphids, spider mites, scale insects, mealybugs and whiteflies.
- Diseases... Gray mold, bacterial blight, black mold and powdery mildew.
If you decide to decorate your home with Cattleya, then you need to consider that it requires good care and special growing conditions. Many growers complain that this orchid does not bloom in them, while among them there are both beginners and those who have been growing flowers for several years. This is due to the fact that flowers appear only on an adult, healthy and strong bush, which has enough strength to bloom. If you wish, you can check whether it is worth waiting for your orchid to bloom in the near future. The bush will bloom in the current season if:
- you purchased a whole bush with live roots, which already has flowers;
- a bush or a delenka has at least four bulbs and live roots, while there should be some trace of the fact that the plant already had flowers.
In other cases, Cattleya may or may not bloom in the current season. In order for a flower to develop and grow within normal limits, you need to pay attention to 4 conditions:
- direct rays of the sun are needed;
- it is important to properly feed and water it;
- preparing the bush for flowering, be sure to provide it with a difference between night and day temperatures within 5-7 degrees;
- during the dormant period, the plant needs to provide optimal conditions.
Cattleya's orchid. Acquaintance))
Cattleya orchid care at home
When growing Cattleya, you need to remember that it needs strict adherence to the agrotechnical rules of the culture.
The plant needs a lot of bright light, so it is recommended to put it on an east or southwest orientation window. A southern window is also suitable, while in the very heat, the flower must be shaded. You can understand that he has enough light by the color of the foliage: the yellowish color of the leaves indicates excessively intense lighting, and if they are dark green, this means they do not have enough light. In normal light, the foliage should be just green.
Such an orchid grows normally and develops at normal room temperature. During the preparation of the plant for flowering, ensure that there is a difference between the nighttime moderate and daytime warm temperatures of 5-7 degrees (at this time of the year, such differences are observed in natural conditions).
Cattleya is undemanding to the level of humidity. However, in the spring and summer period, it is recommended to put her pot on a tray filled with water, she will lower her air roots into it.
Water the flower as the substrate dries in the pot, while making sure that the liquid does not fall on the surface of the foliage. With the onset of a dormant period, watering is first gradually reduced, and then instead of it, the surface of the substrate in the container is moistened from a spray bottle. After the peduncle begins to grow, the flower again begins to be watered regularly.
On hot days, the bush itself and the surface of the substrate can be moistened from a spray bottle, for this they use distilled, rain or well-settled water. This procedure will help not only increase the humidity level, but also reduce the temperature. It is also recommended to arrange a warm shower for the flower once every 30 days, and to clean the substrate in the pot, spill it with plain clean water.
When watering the bush in the fall-winter period, be extremely careful. If suddenly water gets on the aboveground part of the bush, then gently wipe this place dry, otherwise dark spots may form on the flower. If the liquid enters the center of growth, this will lead to the development of rot on the roots and the flower will die.
How to water orchids. How to water Cattleya.
Such an orchid reacts extremely negatively to the transplant, but still sometimes it is necessary to carry out this procedure. Even if it is very carefully transferred into a new container, it will still take a very long time to recover.
As a rule, the flower has to be transplanted when the substrate becomes unusable, or rather, it oxidizes and becomes strongly compacted. In this case, after the young shoots have reached a length of 20-30 mm, the bush is transplanted. But before you start transplanting Cattleya, think about whether you will split it. Any container can be used for planting, but most often flower growers choose translucent plastic pots that do not absorb light. However, the orchid grows best in a non-glazed clay pot. The composition of a suitable substrate should include small and medium fractions of bark and sphagnum. Before transplanting, the bark is poured with water for 2 days. Then the liquid is drained, and the bark is washed with running water.
At the bottom of the planting container, make a 20 mm thick drainage layer, which should consist of expanded clay or pebbles. It is covered with pieces of polystyrene and medium bark, then place a flower in a container and sprinkle its roots with smaller bark. If the room where the flower will stand does not have very high air humidity, then a small amount of perlite must be poured into the substrate, which absorbs moisture and retains it.
Cattleya transplant from A to Z (3 in 1)
It is necessary to feed the flower during the active growth of the pseudobulb. After they stop growing, fertilizing the substrate is stopped. Again, the bush begins to feed when it has a peduncle, and after the beginning of flowering, feeding is stopped again. A suitable fertilizer must contain potassium and phosphorus, using the lowest dosage indicated on the package.
Cattleya is propagated by dividing the bush, which is carried out in conjunction with transplanting the plant into a fresh substrate (once every 3 or 4 years). It is best to split the flower shortly before the young roots appear.
First of all, remove the bush from the container, while keeping in mind that this is quite difficult to do. In the event that Cattleya grows in a plastic pot, then first remember and cuddle it from the sides, and then try to remove the plant. And if the pot is made of clay, then very carefully insert a knife between the substrate and the pot and wiggle the bush with it to pull the roots out of the container.
Dip the roots of the orchid into a basin and fill it with water. After about 30 minutes. the substrate should get wet, then try to gently stir and disassemble the roots, note that as a result of your actions, they should not be injured. It is recommended to disassemble the roots directly in water, while, as it gets dirty, it must be replaced with a clean one. After the roots are almost completely cleared of the substrate, they need to be examined and all injured, dead, dry and rotten areas must be cut out. In the event that young sprouts already have rotten roots, then this indicates that the watering is too abundant. Sprinkle the cut sites with cinnamon or coal powder; you cannot use antiseptics containing alcohol for this. After such a treatment, the root system must be dried very well in a warm place.
Only when the root system dries out can you start dividing the bush. Please note that on each section there must be a live kidney and at least three pseudobulbs, as well as live roots. To separate the plant, a very sharp instrument previously disinfected with alcohol or fire is used. If it is dirty, it can cause the bush to become infected with a bacterial or viral disease. Sprinkle all the cuts with cinnamon or charcoal powder. Plant the delenki in separate pots in the same way as the bush itself when transplanting (see above).
Cattleyas, notch, division ... Dividing my cattleyas
Cattleya varieties with photos and names
Cattleya is a very spectacular plant that can decorate any room. At the same time, both varieties and species that were born thanks to breeders and natural ones are very beautiful. Today, there are more than 1 thousand different varieties of Cattleya, below will be described those of them that are most popular with flower growers:
Cattleya bicolor (Cattleya bicolor)
The height of the plant varies from 0.3 to 0.6 m, while the flowers reach about 10 centimeters in diameter. The flowers are colored reddish-brown, the lip is purple with the edge of a lighter shade. Flowering is observed in autumn and winter.
The bush has a height of about 0.7 m, and the flower reaches 70 mm in diameter. It is tinged with a purplish pink hue with a yellow speck on the purple lip. It blooms in autumn and winter.
The height of the bush is about 0.5 m, and the diameter of the flower is about 20 centimeters. The flowers are painted in a pinkish-white shade, while the rich crimson lip has a white border. Flowering begins in winter or spring.
This miniature plant reaches a height of only 10 to 20 centimeters. Olive flowers have a diameter of about 10 centimeters, the lip is white with a pinkish bloom. Blooms in summer and autumn.
Cattleya (Cattleya, Cattleya). Cattleya's departure
Cattleya orchid - home care
Cattleya one of those orchids that appear among the first in the collections of orchid enthusiasts. And it's not just the extraordinary beauty of its fragrant flowers. Cattleya is a rather unassuming flower and a novice florist can easily take care of her.
A little about the plant
Cattleya belongs to the sympodial group of orchids. Let me remind you that these are orchids growing as a bush from one rhizome, rhizome. According to some sources, there are more than 180 species of the genus in nature "Cattleya". Depending on the species, you can find its external resemblance to dendobiums, miltonia, cambria, etc. Cattleya comes from South America. It was first discovered in northern Brazil in the early 19th century by William Swanson. But the florist and gardener William Catley, from whose name this plant and the genus as a whole, got their name, "tamed" it and made it a plant suitable for home cultivation. Cattleya has abundant and very beautiful flowering. Each of the peduncles of this orchid is capable of producing up to five large flowers. In addition to the unusual color and size of flowers, not inferior to the size of large phalaenopsis flowers, Cattleya flowers also exude a magnificent aroma.
Why cattleya does not bloom
This orchid does not have a capricious disposition. But most often novice growers are faced with the problem that their cattleya does not bloom. At the same time, there are no apparent reasons for such "non-blooming". The plant is healthy, it grows new pseudobulbs, the conditions and care are proper. But what's the matter?
First of all, the age of the plant. Cattleya bloom can only begin with four pseudobulbs. Therefore, for the start of full flowering, it must gain enough strength.
But usually, the orchid enters the house already blooming, and therefore at a sufficiently mature age for repeated flowering. And they all do not come. There is nothing critical about this. It is possible that the Cattleya simply needs to adapt to the conditions that you provide her. In this case, you need to be patient and wait.
In general, in order for your Cattleya to bloom, you should strictly follow the rules for its maintenance and care. Of which the main ones are:
- Correctly organized rest period.
- During preparation for flowering, a temperature difference is required. The difference between daytime and nighttime temperatures should be approximately five degrees.
- Very good lighting with a significant proportion of sunlight.
Now about these and other rules in more detail.
Description of calathea
The vast majority of calathea varieties have underground shoots located near the surface of the earth and forming a root system. They store the moisture necessary for the flower. It is from them that new rosettes appear, formed by large oval leaves. They are up to 40 cm long and are located on long petioles. The calathea bush itself can reach almost a meter in size. The outer surface of the leaves is painted in different shades of green, and may also have splashes of white, yellow or pink. The seamy side of the leaf blades is most often painted in pinkish-purple tones, but there are also species with completely green leaves.
Up to 6 new plates can appear on the bush per year. In the spring, during the flowering period, the plant forms nondescript inflorescences-spikelets of white or lilac flowers, which do not have any special decorative effect.The exception is two calatheas - Varshevich and saffron. Their flowers are located behind bright bracts, painted in tones of white, orange or pinkish colors.
As a representative of Marantovs, calathea also has an interesting feature characteristic of them. The nubs, located between the petiole and the leaf blade, control the leaves themselves, turning them closer to the light. Because of this, every evening the leaf blades of the calathea rise upward, folding like hands in prayer. With the onset of the morning, they return to their original position. Due to this feature, calathea and arrowroot are also known as "prayer flowers".
Reproduction by division: priority is given to sympodial orchids
The most suitable for reproduction by division are orchids that grow sideways, scientifically - sympodial orchids. Among them are cattleya, catazetum, oncidium, kalanta, cymbidium, miltonia. Often this type of orchid reproduces on its own.
When the overgrowth prevents the flower from developing normally, the plant is divided. Reproduction is usually carried out in the spring: the orchid is carefully taken out of the pot, the old soil is removed and the shoot between the bulbs (rhizome) is cut into pieces with a couple of nodes with a disinfected knife.
In the separated parts, a few formed pseudo-bulbs with roots and leaves should remain. Traditionally, to avoid decay, the cut points are processed with crushed coal. At the end of the procedure, the resulting new orchids can be placed in moist moss and a mini-greenhouse, or they can be planted immediately in separate pots.
Disease and pests
Improper watering can lead to gray and black rot on the stems, leaves and roots of orchids. Planting containers untreated from fungal diseases, soil substrate cause powdery mildew, bacterial spotting. Aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, scale insects, whitefly larvae can settle on orchids.
It is possible to eliminate diseases and pests, carry out preventive treatments with the help of modern biological products that destroy sources of diseases and insects in a safe way for humans. Such means include fungicidal and insecticidal preparations of targeted and general action.
Florists sometimes hesitate to grow Cattleya orchids in their home greenhouses, fearing that they will not cope with the task. Why this opinion was formed is not clear, because caring for plants of this family is no more difficult than for other types of orchids.