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Orchids/4n phals


QUESTION: What does it mean when a phal is 4n?

ANSWER: Thank you for your question Matt.  4n refers to the number of chromosomes in the plant's
tissues.  Since the normal number is 2n, this means that the number of chromosomes has doubled. This can result in thicker leaves and a plant that has more substance incuding heavier flower parts and more flowers. However, if you have a cross in which only one plant in the cross is 4n and the other plant is not, the effect is not as marked.

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QUESTION: Thank you for the answer.  So would you consider a 4n plant worth the extra cost?

II wouldn't buy a 4n plant just because it is 4n.  I would first want to see it in flower (either a picture or the plant itself).  Then too I would want to know the cost.  I remember occasions when I wanted a particular plant and when I finally found it, the owner wanted $5,000 for a division. There are many 4n plants with flowering size plants thatcan be had for less than $50.  Many 4n plants have been awarded by the American Orchid Society (AOS) as having superior quality so you might check to see if it had garnered an AOS award.


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Wayne King


Any question about orchid culture. I have thirty+ yrs of growing experience,president 2x of our local Orchid Growers Guild,held a position in most all other offices associated with the Guild at one time or another. Head of Orchid judging team for local club meetings and some shows. Member of two Orchid Socities and local Rep.for Mid America Orchid Congress for several yrs.I have in my collection about 800 Orchid plants of all types.


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