Orchid Flasking

It was so windy last weekend and freezing cold. We didn’t get up to much in the garden aside from a bit of weeding. Instead we turned to indoor projects, which includes sewing seeds that don’t germinate, murdering houseplants and now a new hobby: orchid flasking!

Since I started writing this I’ve realised that the seeds we bought are fakes, which led to an interesting conversation with my eight year old who didn’t realise and couldn’t comprehend that people would do that (bless). In hindsight it is pretty obvious because the seeds aren’t like dust, which apparently they should be, but more like lumpy cabbage seeds.

We are really clutching at straws now with kids’ projects in lockdown so didn’t entirely research this well, but overall we did have fun making up agar, wearing face masks and gloves and using tweezers and a sterilised jam jar to create our little experiment.

So I now have a jam jar of goo (going mouldy) to add to the array of other bizarre pots of detritus I have littering windowsills and various sinks and sideboards in the house. In amongst this random collection of lovely dirt I have germinated two Sweet Peas and a handful of Sweet Sultan which are, like everyone, valiantly striving for sunshine. Not exactly ready to give up the day job, but always happy to grow things. I have a great track record with goosegrass and stingers if anyone asks.

Back to flasking! I’m never one to give up lightly, so our next plan is to try propagation with some of the orchids we have. Might as well. If we get a seed pod then great, if we don’t, there’s nothing lost and at least we get to don face masks and gloves again and play scientists.