June 2022

Show and Tell


From Kurt Shanebeck:


Outdoors coastal, north of Los Angeles:

Coelogyne lawrenceana

A medium sized epiphyte native to Vietnam with large flowers. Supposedly they can have multiple successive blooms from each inflorescence, but I have only ever observed a single flower. Growing potted in moderately bright light.

Dendrobium chrysotoxum

Growing mounted with a drier winter rest.

Vanda cristata

A couple of months ago I showed a photo of a plant that was labeled as Vanda cristata, but the bloom appeared to be Vanda alpina due to the lack of “horns” on the lip. After showing the photo to Andy Phillips he agreed with my assessment that it was Vanda alpina. He was more than happy to sell me another plant he assured me was the real Vanda cristata, it has now bloomed and indeed the “horns” are plainly visible on the lip. Growing mounted under bright light.

Dendrobium unicum

Native to Thailand, brightly colored flowers with interesting veins on the lip. Growing mounted under bright light.

Cattleya fournieri

One of the rupicolous Laelia from Brazil with a very cute and lovely flower. Growing in a terra cotta pot with fine bark and granite under bright light and RO water 2-3 times a week.

Vanda tricolor

A larger plant native to the Philippines. I have it growing potted in a bark mix although many of the roots are no longer in the pot. Likes bright light and water a couple of times a week.

Coelogyne nitida

Native to India and Southeast Asia, I am growing it potted in a bark mix and water it about 4 times a week.

Dendrobium aphyllum ssp. latifolium

A semi-deciduous Dendrobium from the Himalayas. I have been giving it a drier winter rest. During the growing season it gets bright light and daily water.

Renanthera imshootiana

Epiphyte native to Southeast Asia. Sequentially blooming flowers. Growing potted in a bark mix, I have been giving it a drier winter rest-but I am not sure if it is required. I give it bright light and water 2-3 times a week in the growing season.

Dendrobium fleckeri

Native to Australia—spindly pseudobulbs topped by a pair of leaves. Somewhat cuppy flowers with frilly lips emerge from the apical nodes. Growing potted in a bark mix-likes bright light and is watered 1-2 times a week.

Indoors, Under Lights:

Bulbophyllum lobbii “Kathy’s Gold”

Growing on a tree fern slab under moderate LED lights. It is watered 3 times a week.

Dendrobium macrophyllum

Potted in a bark mix and growing in a south facing window. Native to the tropical pacific islands. Curious, very heavily textured sepals. Watered 3 times a week.


From Scott McGregor:

All orchids grown outdoors, coastal southern California

Bulbophyllum wendlandianum

This species isn’t fussy-- grows very well outdoors, staying compact on a mount, and blooming reliably.  Pics are of one of almost a dozen spikes that open over the course of a couple months, each with 3-5 flowers.

Capanemia uliginosa (superflua)

ery cute mini.  As a twig epiphyte, it prefers to be mounted with roots exposed to the air, bright light and frequent watering.

Dendrobium falconeri

Lots of new growth but alas, only one flower this year.  At least it is a pretty one!

Diplocaulobium arachnoideum

Flush blooms for a single day, but 3-4 times/year and the spidery white flowers are intensely scented of watermelon. (Ed. Don't blink or you may miss the blooming)

Domingoa (Nageliella) angustifolia

Blooms for a couple months with sequential flowers on old flower stalks, so don’t cut them!

Eulophia speciosa

Bright yellow, long-lasting flowers that open sequentially, blooming over many months.  A terrestrial with underground tubers from Southern Africa that likes sandy soil and full sun.

Leptotes bicolor 4n

Two plants, one typical and one 4N (doubled chromosomes).  The 4N version is definitely nicer in all respects except quantity of flowers.  Leptotes bicolor seed pods contain vanillin, and so can be fermented into mini vanilla pods, in case you always wanted to grow vanilla but don’t have the space or climate!

Leptotes bicolor typical

Maxillaria (Christensonella) vitteliniflora

If you like your mini’s really small…

Pholidota chinensis

Flowers open from the end of the spikes first.


From Roberta Fox:


Outside in the Back Yard:


Angraecum germinyanum

Delightful flowers, night-fragrant. It is in a 6 inch basket with sphaghnum, but much of the plant has extended itself well outside of the basket. Grown shady and damp. Native to Madagascar.

Oncidium (Odontoglossum) naevium

This beautiful species grows in cloud forests of the eastern Andes in Colombia and Venezuela, at elevations from 1200 to 2000 m. I grow it shady and damp. It needs to be on the cool side - it grows in my coastal back yard, but would probably not do well farther inland.

Coelogyne speciosa

It can bloom 2 or 3 times a year. The translucent flowers look very fragile, but actually have firm substance. This needs to grow in a basket, since flowers may emerge from nearly any direction. Native to Java and Sumatra, at elevations up to 1800 m.

Dendrobium aphyllum ssp. latifolium
(syn. Den. pierardii)

A lot of deciduous species from the Himalaya region of southeast Asia and southwest China are blooming now in my yard. I don't dry any of them out, just the generally reduced watering in cool weather. Most of the species of this type are mounted or in baskets, so they dry rapidly and that seems to be sufficient for blooming.

Dendrobium dickasonii

This one is native to India, Thailand and Mynanmar. As with the others of this type, it blooms on bare canes from the previous year.

Dendrobium loddigesii

From a wide area of mountainous regions of southeast Asia and southwestern China. Some of the blooming canes look dead... clearly they aren't, don't cut anthing that isn't totally shriveled.

Dendrobium regium

Native to India. The delicate shading of the flowers contrasting with the yellow throat is particularly lovely. I got this as a small division a few years ago, and each year it gets bigger and better.

Dendrobium unicum

From northern Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam. Flowers are not only brilliant in color, but intriguing in form.

Disa sagittalis

Scott showed this one last month, when the spike of mine was just a little nubbin starting out. The difference, I'm certain, is the amount of sun in our respective yards. Mine is quite shady until well after the vernal equinox, now getting good sun for much of the day. And sun-loving orchids like this wait for it. As Scott noted last month, although this goes dormant after blooming, it comes from an area that stays wet, and so does not need, or want, an aggressive dry period.

Eulophia speciosa

Another terrestrial from Africa that bloomed for Scott a full month before it bloomed for me. Last winter I didn't move it away from the sprinklers, so it got watered. And it is growing much better than in the years when dried it out. So lesson learned... it really does want winter watering. It is growing in sand. The next time I repot it, I will try adding a smal amount of organic matter. It can grow in a desert environment, but appears to not require that.

Epidendrum parkinsonianum

From a wide area of Mexico and Central America. This species needs to be mounted, since the growths hang downward. However, it's a bit of a challenge to keep it sufficiently hydrated. I acquired this on a too-small mount, so I attached the original mount to a larger piece of cork, and stuff some sphagnum between the two pieces. That has greatly improved the health of the plant. It is quite fragrant at night.

Epidendrum falcatum

This species is a close relative to Epi. parkinsonianum, from much of the same areas. While the leaves hang downward, the new growth is just as likely to go sideways. However, when it does, it's very fragile. If the plant is moved, it's hard to not break off those side growths. So I leave it alone and let it grow in one spot - and don't take it to meetings. Broken growths are pretty easy to establish, so this may be a mechanism for propagating itself.

Epidendrum lacustre 'Wow Fireworks' AM/AOS

This is the purple form from Panama. The typical form is white and green. As a "species nut" I don't often have plants that fit award criteria, but this one did. It is very vigorous - the two photos on the right (night with flash, and natural daylight) show plants in two two-gallon pots hanging next to each other (divisions of the same plant), to make a great display. It's a beast... if it were not divided I would not be able to lift it. And it needs to hang up high, to get maximum sun to develop the color well. To quote Harry Phillips, this species wants full sun, sopping wet. The "sopping wet" part I achieve by filling the certer of the pot with sphagnum, just filling in around the edges and top with small bark.

Octomeria praestans

From southern Brazil. This species has terete leaves, and blooms from the point where the leaf emerges from the thin pseudobulb. It blooms several times a year, from that same location and a growth may continue to bloom for about 2 years.


Maxillaria pachyphylla

The flowers aren't very dramatic in color, and hide at the base of the plant. However, they are very fragrant, and one may smell them before seeing them. Leaves are thick and succulent. It is native to Boiivia and soutbern Brazil, and IOSPE gives an elevation of 400 m which would imply that it grows warm, but cautions that location information may not be reliable. It does fine on my patio, so that would imply a wider range of elevations. It can bloom twice a year, or produce the occasional flower at other times.

Symphyglossum sanguineum
(Oncidium strictum)

Syn. Cochlioda sanguinea. Native to Ecuador and Peru, at elevations from 1500-2000 m. Fairly long-lating flowers.


Oncidium harrisonianum
(Grandiphyllum auricula)

Native to southern Brazil, at elevations from 1000-1100 m. According to the Baker culture sheet in Orchidwiz it comes from a very humid environment. However, mine grows on a bare cork slab with no moss. It has hard leaves, which would imply high light and adaptation to dryness. I have had it for about 15 years, so it has tolerated city water and early rookie mistakes. I have found it to be fairly bullet-proof. It blooms faithfully every year.

Telipogon (Stellilabium) astroglossus

Most Telipogons come from high elevations and don't survive our summers. This one, however, grows at around 850 meters in Ecuador and Peru, and has grown well for me over about 2 years. It looks similar to a Trichoceros to me... It is a micro-mini orchid. Flower is around 7 mm. note the top right photo with my thumb for scale. It pushes the limits of my little camera to capture the detail of this cute tiny orchid with its very hairy lip.

Renanthera pulchella

I can't find much information about this species. IOSPE has just one sentence, "Found in Myanmar as a hot growing epiphyte". However, it clearly grows over a much wider range and tolerates cold, since it has been growing and blooming on my patio for about 5 years.

Masdevallia infracta

This is fairly warmth-tolerant compared to many in the genus. The flowers have heavy substance. An inflorescence can produce several flowers successively.

Stelis purpurea

This is how it looks during most of the day. The first time it produced buds, I wondered when they would ever open... they seemed to just sit there.

One morning I went out to look at my plants early, in the cool of the morning - and found the flowers open (the inset shows a closeup view). Two hours later, in the warm sun, the flowers were shut. Each day, they followed the same pattern. On cool days (May gray, June gloom) the flowers stay open longer.

In the greenhouse...

Angraecum distichum

Every few months I get a flush bloom from this little gem.

Chelonistele sulphurea

Closely related to Coelogyne. Native to Sumatra, Java, and the Philippines. It grows well in the greenhouse, but the Baker culture sheet in Orchidwiz states that it can grow at high elevations as well as low. This plant will be soon moving outside so that it can acclimate.