Ed, a retired chemist, has been growing orchids since 1984. His primary interests are in Paphs and Phrags and cool growing orchids. Ed has a small greenhouse where he grows mostly species and primary Paphs and Phrags hybrids. He also grows a large variety of cool growing orchids outdoors. He finds the orchid species of the Bay Area and California interesting. Ed is also interested in orchid seed germination; he has made several hybrids and developed a technique for orchid seed germination without the use of sophisticated lab equipment.
In nature orchids seeds are only germinated with the help of a fungus, which rarely occurs. This hurdle in germination have caused orchids to evolve, producing a huge number of seeds to increase the odds that some will germinate. In 1922, Lewis Knudson developed a process to germinate large percentages of mature orchid seeds. Since orchids seeds lack any source of energy for the growing embryo, Knudson provided the energy source by adding sugar to the growing media. Unfortunately, that also encourages the growth of all kinds of undesirable organisms and inhibit or completely prevent the germination of the orchid seeds. Therefore, it is critical to do all the preparations of the media and the sowing of the seed in strictly sterile conditions. This process typically requires the use of sophisticated and expensive laboratory equipment. Ed has developed a process where orchid seed germination can be achieved using common equipment found in every household. His technique has the potential to extend successful orchid seed germination to the average orchid hobbyist.
Barry Zimmerman will supply the plant table as he is looking to downsize his collection.