Bud drop in Phalaenopsis tested02 September 2016
Some growers think that Phalaenopsis must have 50% open flowers when supplied to look its best. But a large share of the trade wants to have a less mature plant. They claim that plants with closed buds can be enjoyed for longer. You can read the results of a test conducted to resolve this contention in this report.
The test centres of Royal FloraHolland have been carrying out permanent tests for the last four years as commissioned by Orchidee Nederland under the heading 'Royal Flora Holland Quality'. These tests indicate the optimal stage of flowering when the plant is being marketed. In Aalsmeer we test around 2,000 Phalaenopsis each year.
Test results of bud drop
The Aalsmeer test results revealed that plants with less than 50% open flowers exhibit significantly more bud drop. On average, the risk of bud drop decreases for each 10% more open flowers. In other words, a more mature plant experiences less bud drop (on average). There are differences between the cultivars: some are extremely sensitive, others hardly ever suffer bud drop.
All of the test plants undergo a standard marketing simulation following a protocol established by the Association of Flower Auctions in The Netherlands (Vereniging van Bloemenveilingen in Nederland, VBN). The protocol consists of a simulation of transport and storage in the chain (seven days in the dark at 15°C) and a shop simulation (six days in the light at 20°C, in its packaging). This standardised protocol ensures that the results of different tests are comparable.
Conclusions that can be drawn:
- On average, less mature plants experience more bud drop.
- Dark periods in the chain stimulate bud drop.
- Cultivars can be more sensitive or less sensitive.
- Without dark periods, bud drop still occurs, but later.
Would you like to learn more?
The advisory report 'Stages of maturity of Phalaenopsis' is published by the 'Chain Communication and Quality' work group of Orchidee Nederland. You can request a copy from our Customer Services.
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