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U. multifida Pollination

Wire Man

Sphagnum Guru
My seed grown plants just opened the first two flowers yesterday. They're gorgeous, but unbelievably tiny!!!

What's the best way of going about cross pollinating them? I was thinking of either using a toothpick with a lightly chewed tip (helps pollen adhesion) or setting them outside and letting whatever can fit in them do the work.

BTW, what is their natural pollinator? I've never seen any data on this.
Check out this sticky in the Ping section. The flowers have the same structure & the explanations/diagrams are probably better than I can offer. For me, the smaller the flower the more difficult the process. To facilitate, I sever the flower at the 'hinge' and go from there (so take pics before you start).
was this species an obligate annual? Or in cultivation could you keep it going without needing to replant seeds?
I believe it's an obligate annual. We'll find out soon enough. I might get more seeds shipped to keep genetic diversity up.

That sticky helps a lot. I might be able to do the pollination with my camera, live view, and macro lens. I'll take plenty of photos before doing this.
I think I got it to work without tearing of the lip of the flowers! I shaved down a toothpick to fit into the tube of the flowers, chewed the end a bit to make pollen adhere better, and used that as a false bug. The ovaries look like they're swelling.

I did something similar to a Paphiopedilum flower, allowing me to keep the pouch intact and still cross pollinate.