Dendrobium Nobile Culture

The Dendrobium Nobile is a cool grower and has flowers that bloom along the pseudobulb rather than form the top of the pseudobulb on a raceme as the warm grower Dendrobium Phalaenopsis.

TEMPERATURE: The nobile dendrobium is very hardy. They truly love it outside. If the temperature should drop to as low as 38 F. at night there is little to worry about, they can take it. However, if you are in a possible frost area, protect these plants.

WATERING: In the spring of the year when the pant is sending out new growth you should be watering about once a week. During periods of low humidity or when it is very hot, spray the foliage especially if the plant has not been watered in the last three to five days. Cut down your watering of nobile type Dendrobiums in September to induce bud formation which lots of blooms come spring. In October water only when it looks like your pseudobulbs are shriveling or it gets very hot a good spray is beneficial. Water should be withheld until such a time as flower buds have clearly started their development in the spring.

FERTILIZING: In the spring when there is new growth showing it's time to start with a high nitrogen fertilizer. It does not harm to fertilize every time you water, but mix your fertilizer at half strength recommended by the manufacturer. Stop using high nitrogen fertilizer in July and start using the high phosphorus (10-30-20) and only when you have to water.

LIGHT: Only about 30 to 50% shading is required during most of the year provided there is a sufficient amount of air movement over the plants. For good growth and blooms it is generally recommended that you have at least 1500 to 3000 foot candles.

POTTING MEDIUM: In So. Cal. fine fir bark (1/8 to 1/4") is an excellent medium. Other medium are osmunda, sphagnum moss, New Zealand moss and numerous other mixes. As with all orchid plants good drainage is a must. Dendrobiums as a group like very small pots. As an example, a plant with 3 to 4 pseudobulbs and about 10 to 15" tall, a 3 to 4" pot is adequate.

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