View Full Version : Cypripedium californicum-video Back into the sun

04-23-2013, 10:14 PM
Of all the orchids that I am familiar with and grown, both working for a commercial grower in Santa Barbara and on a personal level, the genus Cypripedium has come to be my favorite genus. But one significant snag with this genus: they do not occur naturally in the area of California where I live.
Part of the reason why they do not occur this far south is due to their need for a period of cold temperatures 24/7. I believe the reason for this is that the species are not able to handle a prolonged period of growth without becoming exhausted and subsequently becoming weaker and weaker until death sets in. My own experience with growing some Eastern US species without using any type of prolonged cold storage of the plants seem to confirm this observation.
Nonetheless, the act of keeping the plants cold, vernalization, is easily accomplished by refrigeration at around 36 F (2.2 C). For the northern California (and southern Oregon) native C. californicum, this means for a minimal period of 3 months.

So then on May 10, 2010, I received 7 seedlings from Sprangle Creek Labs of 1 year old seedlings of Cypripedium californicum. Sprangle Creek Labs is noted for raising a number of native Cypripedium species from seed in vitro. My hopes were to attempt to grow the plants using vernalization yearly and see if I can ever get them to flower using a method of depotting, vernalizing, and repotting annually.

Please check out an earlier thread that shows my 6 Photobucket sheets on these plants.
Photobucket reports on C. californicum (http://cnps.org/forums/showthread.php?t=1674)

This past March I made a short video of the plants.
Cypripedium californicum planting out (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HVQZpDLLPqY)

Here is the link to the Calflora page on this species:
Cypripedium californicum CalFlora page (http://www.calflora.org/cgi-bin/species_query.cgi?where-calrecnum=2594)