Barkeria – Barkeria – Orchids – Barkeria – Orchids

The genus Barkeria includes 10-15 species of epiphytic deciduous orchids native to Central America. They have contained dimensions and long cylindrical pseudobulbs similar to canes, erect; the leaves grow up alternately along the pseudobulbs, are thin, 8-10 cm long, of pale green colour with reddish margin, completely reddish on the lower page.

In late summer and autumn, they produce beautiful flowers of violet, lilac, white or cream colour, united in inflorescences of 2-7 flowers, solitary in the young plants. The labellum is stretched downwards, while sepals and petals tend upwards, as if to form a crown. At the end of flowering the leaves wither and the plant enters into winter vegetative rest.

These plants are very appreciated for their long flowering period and small size, but they are not very cultivated because of the difficulty of growing them in conditions too dissimilar from natural ones.

Barkeria melanocaulon

Exposure

orchidea barkeria spectablisThe Barkeria orchids need very luminous positions, where, however, the rays of the sun are always filtered, as the direct exposure, especially on the hottest days, can lead to dangerous burns of the foliar apparatus; the ideal cultivation temperature is around 15-20°C, even if in summer they can tolerate higher temperatures, whilst in winter, when the leaves are withered, they can bear temperatures close to 10-15°C.

  • Fiori scarpetta Some species of orchids have very special flowers, with a curved labellum, closed to form a kind of shoe; orchids with cup-shaped lips belong to three main genus of orchids.
  • Orchidee Cattleya spicata The genus cattleya orchids counts about fifty species of epiphytes and lithophytes, native to South America; they are equipped with fleshy pseudobulbs, which may have dimensions close to the 5-7 cm, with a …

  • Masdevallia It is a genus that includes many epiphytic orchids, originating in the wetlands and mountains of South America, from Mexico to Peru. They do not have pseudubulbs and the leaves are long and narrow, they are not…
  • Laelia The genus Laelia includes about 50-60 species of orchids, mainly epiphytic, native to Central America, very similar to the cattleya. These varieties form dense tufts of pseudobulbs, which are often found in the…

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Watering

barkeria fiori In spring, when the new shoots begin to sprout from the substratum, the watering must be regular and abundant, the soil must be quite humid and it is advisable to vaporize often the leaves and the pseudobulbs, it is important that after the watering the excess water flows freely from the pot; with the beginning of the flowering, halve the watering, keeping, however, the soil humid.

At the end of the flowering, completely suspend the watering, vaporizing sporadically the plant, at least once every 10-15 days; if it is kept in a cold place, it is good to suspend completely the watering and the vaporization till spring. During the vegetative period, provide specific fertilizer and orchids dissolved in the water of the watering every 10-12 days, using about 1/4 of the recommended dose.

Land

barkeria lindleyana The barkeries need a very well drained soil, consisting of pieces of bark, pieces of coal and osmunda fibre; it is advisable to make numerous holes in the pot to simulate the natural conditions; in fact the barkeries are epiphytic plants and in the equatorial forests they develop on the bark of small trees, with the roots completely exposed to the air.

Multiplication

The reproduction of the Barkeria orchids takes place in spring by divisions of the heads of pseudobulbs, as soon as these emit new shoots. The new plants thus obtained are to be immediately repotted in single containers, utilizing the same substratum which is employed for the cultivation of the adult orchids.

These plants should be repotted when the roots have filled the container, replacing the substrate that over time degrades, so as to provide better support.

Barkeria: Pests and diseases

barkeria skinneri Pay attention to cochineal and root rot. Cochineals are deposited on the leaves and, when their presence is limited, instead of resorting to insecticide products, it is advisable to intervene with a manual intervention, using a cotton ball with alcohol.

For root rot, attention must be paid to the chosen substrate and water supply, which must be constant but not leave the soil soaked.

Orchidee

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Orchidee rare