Paph Bel Royal 'Memoria Terry Turner' AM/AOS

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emydura

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Canberra, Australia
The beast is in flower again. I really need to buy a bigger backdrop. This is the best it has flowered. Two spikes of six flowers. I really thought I was going to get 7 flowers in that taller spike as the bract in the final flower was huge. But I just got a taller spike with bigger flowers.

Our Spring show is in 4 weeks, so I am hoping it can last until then. Might be touch and go. The logistics of getting it there will be another thing.


Bel-Royal-2023.jpg



Bel-Royal-2023-3.jpg



Bel-Royal-2023-2.jpg
 
The pouch color and petal width of yours is much better than mine, great plant there! 7 flowers would've been awesome.

If you're trying to get more spikes, aka growths, one thing you can try is increasing the light intensity for a short period. However, I say that without knowing what your current light levels are. You definitely are growing it very well!
 
can you even get it into your car, David??

I have transported it before, but the plant is now even bigger. The biggest limiting factor is the height of the spikes. I don't think I can fit the spikes in without them hitting the roof. Not staked anyway. I could unstake them and have them at an angle. But I certainly won't be able to fit many other orchids in. Looks like multiple trips to the show hall.
 
The pouch color and petal width of yours is much better than mine, great plant there! 7 flowers would've been awesome.

If you're trying to get more spikes, aka growths, one thing you can try is increasing the light intensity for a short period. However, I say that without knowing what your current light levels are. You definitely are growing it very well!

Thanks. You must have read my mind. I have been planning to ask the forum why I am struggling to get my plants to multiply. A lot of them only add one growth at a time. Sometimes they initiate two growths, but one invariably dies. So you think if you grow them in brighter light, you will get more growths? I do grow them fairly shaded. The light in Australia in summer is very intense, especially where I live. I have found with less shade, the leaves get very light and the plant looks a little unhealthy. But I am starting to think I may need to increase my light levels.
 
Maybe if you adjusted your fertilizer? Something with a bit more nitrogen perhaps?
If they grow and flower but only push out a single growth, I would not increase the light. Perhaps fertilizer with more frequent waterings?
 
WAUW! You can't say, it's lacking in impressiviousity, David! 🤩

But I certainly perceive the logistic challenges you are facing, when it comes to its humonguous size!

May one propose a solution in form of a truck and a lorry?
And for Heaven's sake, don't try to transport it on your own on your scooter! 😉
 
Thanks. You must have read my mind. I have been planning to ask the forum why I am struggling to get my plants to multiply. A lot of them only add one growth at a time. Sometimes they initiate two growths, but one invariably dies. So you think if you grow them in brighter light, you will get more growths? I do grow them fairly shaded. The light in Australia in summer is very intense, especially where I live. I have found with less shade, the leaves get very light and the plant looks a little unhealthy. But I am starting to think I may need to increase my light levels.
I grow primarily on south-facing windowsills in the northeastern US. We have nice long summer days, but by mid-winter the sun sets around 4pm. I have also struggled with getting my plants to break multiple growths, so I was wondering if light had something to do with it. A little over a year ago I purchased some LED panels and have been using them to extend the day length for some of my plants by just a few hours. They are not super bright, and they’re only on for a few hours in the late afternoon. Concurrently with the increase in light, I ramped up my fertilizing, as well as watering. A few months after the increase in light and fertilizer I had several mature roths and stoneis break 2-3 new leads. This coming flowering season will be my first bloom cycle on these now larger plants, but I hope the increase in vegetative growth translates to increases in flower count. This wasn’t a controlled experiment by any means, and it could be the plants were mature and were going to break new leads anyway, but I suspect pushing the light and nutrients a bit helped. That’s a long-winded answer to suggest increasing light, perhaps duration if you’re able, and fertilizer to support the increase in growth.
 
Thanks. You must have read my mind. I have been planning to ask the forum why I am struggling to get my plants to multiply. A lot of them only add one growth at a time. Sometimes they initiate two growths, but one invariably dies. So you think if you grow them in brighter light, you will get more growths? I do grow them fairly shaded. The light in Australia in summer is very intense, especially where I live. I have found with less shade, the leaves get very light and the plant looks a little unhealthy. But I am starting to think I may need to increase my light
I grow my Bel Royal under very bright light conditions. It is along side my catelyas and if memory serves me correctly, I have it under close to 200ųmols PPFD for 12 hrs (this is with grow lights so doesnt follow the low lit morning and afternoon cycle).

I'm not recommending you to go this bright, certainly not right away. Indeed, the leaves can show a unhealthy look, certainly not the nice green foliage you have.

I don't think you would need to subject the plant to bright light for a long period of time before you see a response on new growth. I'm lazy and just keep my plant in the same spot with the same continous conditions.

Bright light leading to multiple growths comes from experience and noted literature sources on rothschildianum culture. However, I think it could apply to many other paphs. My theory is that the higher light intensities slows down the primary growth stem, which leads to more lateral growth. A similar response would be like a single-centered onion bulb. When apical growth is retarded, it starts growing multiple lateral growths (no longer being single-centered). Likewise, cutting the primary stem on a plant or a tree, leads to more secondary growth.

Some disclaimers I should mention:
1. There might be a genertic component to this where even changing the environment won't produce similar results.
2. As in all things, it is important to adjust all factors appropriately. Increase light may need increase fertilizer and/or watering and adjustments to temperature. Keep the entire system in mind.
3. To avoid any set back, make small changes and observe. Fortunately you got a hybrid and a very happy one so should be able to handle some stress. I'm not advocating the brighter light is a better culture, I'm just suggesting that it will provide a subtle stress response which will lead to more side growths.
 
Maybe if you adjusted your fertilizer? Something with a bit more nitrogen perhaps?
If they grow and flower but only push out a single growth, I would not increase the light. Perhaps fertilizer with more frequent waterings?

Thanks for your response. I do fertilise regularly. Most waterings, especially during the warmer parts of the year.
 
This is an interesting thread - and I would agree with what has been said above.
I grow all my multiflorals in the brightest part of the north facing shade-house (Southern hemisphere) and they are bathed in full sun all day. Even through the shade cloth is at 70%, in summer you still bake when standing on this side of the shade-house. If I hold my hand about 1m above the plants, the shadow that my fingers cast is still distinct. In addition, I also feed weekly-weakly all year round and they have nearly all rewarded me with mulitiple growths.

What I do find with high light intensity is the dramatic effect on the leaves. Certain species (gigantifolium, stonei and sanderianum, in particular) and their hybrids grow new leaves that are generally about a 1/3 shorter than the older leaves when I received my plant. My Paph. Mem. Joan Levy arrived with 4 leaves well over 60cm long. All new leaves on the original growth and the multiple new side growths are at a maximum of 30cm long - but they are much broader than the original leaves. It does give the plant an odd grafted-cactus look. On the plus side, they're much easier to handle and don't take up so much space on the bench. Has anybody else noticed such a dramatic effects on the leaf length?

@emydura - stunning awesome plant!!! Neither of my P. Bel Royal plants have flowered yet, they took a bit of a beating in transit. But I'm now really looking forward to what they will produce.

Kind regards

JL
 
Thanks NESlipper, SpurJ and JayeL for your detailed and thoughtful input. I have found it very helpful. It has convinced me that I am growing them a bit too shady. I will increase the light over the coming summer and let you know how it goes.
 
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