Keep dormant Cypripediums refrigerated until planted. Do not refrigerate longer than two weeks unless the temperature is at least 35 degrees F. Do not put Cypripediums in the freezer. If the ground is frozen in January etc., they may be kept planted in a pot above ground either in a cold frame or against a North-facing wall covered with at least a 4in thick covering of mulch for protection.
Cypripedium Culture in Pots
I have been growing Cypripediums for about 10 years. I have found an easy way to grow them with very good success. I call it “Cypripedium culture in pots”. This way of growing Cypripediums will greatly eliminate excess moisture and pathogens in the soil that could harm or rot the roots of the plant. The plant should grow for years in your original pot.
We now offer this one gallon substrate mix on the bottom of our order form, all you will need is the pot, water and mulch.
One-gallon plastic pot or liner preferably black
2 parts -Granite grit [Chicken “grower” size from the feed store]
6 parts -Perlite
2 parts -Potting soil or pro mix
A scoop or a handful of ground oyster shell, from the feed store
- Mix all the substrates together thoroughly and add water only to make it damp.
- Plant the Cypripedium into the pot by holding the plant upright in the pot with the eye of the plant about 1 inch to ½ inch below the top rim of the pot and letting the gravely mix fall around the roots until you fill it to the top. Now tap the bottom of the pot and the substrate should drop down another ½ inch or so. You can top off the rest with the extra substrate mix.
- Now “plant the pot” so it is sunk into the ground, level with the earth.
- Water the plant.
- Now top off the pot in the ground with 1 inch of ground up oak leaf mulch. Oak leaf mulch is ideal but any finely ground mulch will do. If the plant is in a windy area you must make sure the leaf mulch won’t blow away. You can do this by putting on some courser wood chips and or pine needles on top of it. Don’t let the mulches disappear because even though it is a perfect medium to grow the Cypripediums in, the gravely mix will not insulate very well and the eyes could possibly freeze in the winter, or easily dry out in the summer.
- You can safely fertilize your Cypripediums with Peter’s 20-20-20 mixed as directed 1/4th strength only during the growing season.
- Redo this process about once every 3 or 4 years maybe into a larger pot and don’t reuse the old substrate. Start fresh once again.
The Cypripedium collection Raising Rarities offers are all North American species and hybrids. Cypripediums for sale here. We now accept major credit cards and electronic checking through PayPal.com.