Cattleya buds turn black

  Q: One of my cattleya developed a sheath, whereupon I discovered two buds inside which were completely black. Please comment!   A: This is rather common. You should examine sheaths regularly, and when shadows of the buds appear within, you can cut the top 1/2″ off the sheath. This will allow the buds come through easily. This is only necessary with plants with a history of problems such as yours.