Orchid propagation is the production of more orchids by means of seeds, divisions, and cuttings. There are two methods of orchid propagation sexual and vegetative propagation. Sexual reproduction requires pollination and the transfer of genes through gametes. Vegetative propagation is an asexual reproduction process by which new plant "individuals" arise or are obtained without production of seeds or spores, this includes division, meristem culture, and keikis . The plants from vegetative propagation are clones of the mother plant.
Growing from seedsEdit
Seed & Tissue culture reproductionEdit
Seed and tissue culture are important techniques for culturing orchids. Seeds usually have a low rate of germination in the wild and is dependant on a symbiotic relationship with a mycorrhiza fungi. But in the 1920's a experiment by Knudson showed that orchid seeds can germinate without the fungus.
Seeds are usually sown in vitro because they contain very little food reserves, no endosperm or differentiated tissues such as roots. In vitro germination also allow the development of immature embryos, thus shortening the breeding cycle.
Orchid seed are also vegetatively propagated through mericloning to produce vast amounts of nearly identical plants. This is done through the extraction of undifferentiated cells in the shoots and roots.