Acronia stricta or Pleurothallis stricta is one of the few Pleurothallis that I grow. Because many of them are very large plants and because the flowers are often small in proportion to the plant, I've weeded most of them out of my collection, though more for lack of room than for lack of interest. This is one of the few I still have. The plant is about 15 cm tall with narrow leaves and the flower spikes are again that long with 2 cm flowers. The flowers do not, however, last very long, though they bloom several at time in succession,
Monday, October 27, 2014
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Angraecum dideri is one of the smaller Angraecums, but by no means a miniature, especially when the roots are taken in account. They are numerous and wander everywhere attaching themselves to anything they can. The plant, an elongated fan of leaves, grows to 20 cm or a bit taller and produces new growths along the stem. The flowers, produced one or two per spike are 6 cm with a 10 cm nectary or spur extending from the back of the flower. The flowers are a very pale green with a while lip and are fragrant at night. The species is from Madagascar.
Monday, October 20, 2014
As is evident from the photos, Masdevallia constricta has huge flowers that dwarf the plant. The flowers are 13 cm from tip to tip on a plant that is about the same size. The species is from Ecuador and belong to the Saltatrices group of Masdevallias. The species name refers to the "constricted" sepaline tube which is covered on the inside with tiny glandular hairs. This plant was awarded by the American Orchid Society several years ago.
Thursday, October 16, 2014
This is a Paphiopedilum I would not be without. It is one of the smallest of the Paphiopedilums and a very recent discovery (1996). Paphiopedilum helenae is from Vietnam and the plant is only 12 cm across with 5 cm flowers. I've seen different examples of the species and there is considerable variation in flower color and shape, but I have not seen any that were not charming. Interestingly, this species does best for me when grown with my Masdevallias and New Guinea Dendrobiums in cooler conditions. Perhaps that is just due to the fact that it gets higher humidty and better light when grown with them, but it thrives and blooms under those conditions.
Friday, October 10, 2014
This is one of my many plants of this charming species. It comes in a rainbow of colors including this bicolor form, and has flowers that last for months. Dendrobium cuthbertsonii is from the highlands of New Guinea, is a micro-miniature plant, 2 cm or smaller with huge flowers. It is cool growing and does not thrive unless the temperatures are kept down, but very high light will compensate to some extent for higher temperatures. I grow some plants mounted and some in pots in live sphagnum and all do well for me. This plant is a bicolor and has unusually large flowers. It is probably a polyploid.
Monday, October 6, 2014
Paphiopedilum sukhakulii is a species from Thailand. It is a smaller plant but has large and dramatic flowers. Rather unusual for this species, my plant always has two flowers per flowers, rather than just one. Not only are the flowers beautiful, however, but the plant is too, with beautifully patterned fans of leaves. I photographed this on white for a change, though only one flower was open at the time.
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
I do not grow but a couple of Phalaenopsis since I have neither the room nor the conditions for them. The couple I do grow are not in my orchidarium but on a bathroom windowsill. This is one of them, Phalaenopsis violacea var. alba, a variety without the usual purple markings of this species. It is from Sumatra and Malaysia and blooms consecutively on stems that continue to lengthen for years. It is not only very beautifully colored, in my opinion, but has a wonderful fragrance on warm summer days. The plant can become very large with broad flat leaves, but the flowers are around 4 cm.