Aerangis macrocentra seed pods are in production!

This picture shows both of my Aerangis macrocentra plants inside my Tall Orchidarium on the 27th December 2021. Both of these plants have seed pods developing. I cross pollinated at least two of these plants’ flowers, but some of their flowers were pollinated by insects inside this terrarium.

Over the past couple of weeks, the pair of Aerangis macrocentra plants inside my Tall Orchidarium have been busy developing seed pods, which is very exciting!  These two orchids flowered one after the other; there was only a single day when both plants had a flower in bloom at the same time.  Thankfully, I managed to cross-pollinate at least two of these plants’ flowers, but the other seed pods you see here in my pictures were self-pollinated, either by the insects inside my terrarium or by the plants themselves.

It’s very exciting to see orchid seed pods developing! I admire the shape and form of these Aerangis macrocentra seed pods with their handsome grooves and crowns made from the remnants of their flowers.

Currently, these plants are both holding more seed pods than I would usually allow.  I have found that young orchids or orchids that aren’t in prime condition are at risk and tend to decline or die sometime after pollination; one or two of my plants have died whilst in the process of producing seeds and a few plants have died immediately after their seed pods ripened.

Usually, I wouldn’t allow such a young plant to develop as many seed pods as this, for fear of weakening the plant and the risk that the seed pods are aborted before they have fully developed.

I am hoping that I won’t harm these orchids, as I’ve decided for the moment to leave all of the seed pods to develop on the plant and see what happens.  I will be monitoring the plants closely.

Aerangis macrocentra orchids produce seed more rapidly than many of the other orchids I grow.  If this was one of my Phalaenopsis orchid species, which take much longer to develop their seeds, I would have only allowed one or two seed pods to remain on each plant.

Will I change my mind?  Have I made a mistake?  Will the plants abort any of their seed pods?  I’ll let you know in my next update!

These Aerangis macrocentra seed pods are sporting tassels formed from the spent nectaries from their faded flowers.

To see the next update on my Aerangis macrocentra seed pods, please click here.

I purchased both of these Aerangis macrocentra plants as teeny tiny seedlings from Burnham Nurseries in April 2016.

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