NEWSLETTER February 2005
Thrixspermum japonicum, Sophronitis coccinea,
Phalaenopsis mannii, Oncidium torchianum, Oncidium concolor var ottonis.
Photo right; Phal Mannii
Lockhartia lunifera, Diplocaulobium
carysotropsis., Trichoglottis wenzellii
" Select", Vanda merrilli Compacta
to replate. Trichoglottis ionosma, Stanhopea reichenbachiana,
Schomburgkia heidi, Rhyncostylis violacea, Phalaenopsis philippinense,
Phalaenopsis formosana. Ornithocephalus gladiatos,.
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Thrixspermum japonicum. A cool
growing minature species from Japan. Best grown on a small slab ot
cork or treefern in a shady spot.
Sophronitis coccinea. Minature, large
5cm flowers red to scarlet.Sib cross selected clones from Brazil. Best
grown in a small pot or on a piece of treefern. Dont allow this species
to dry out hard, but in winter less water is needed.
An Indian species with glossy yellow, overlaid redbrown, flowers in a panicle.
Best grown in a small pot or basket and is a more intermediate climate
Oncidium torchianum. This is a small
intermediate grower with massed spikes of tiny flowers from Brazil.
Probably best grown on a small piece of treefern or in a very small pot
with well drained media.
Oncidium concolor var ottonis. A showy
Brazilian species. Large concolor yellow flowers, small growing, multiflowered.
var of O.concolor. A treefern slab or small pot is used.
species linked to photographs and cultural notes.
Lockhartia lunifera. This Brazilian
species has small yellow flowers somewhat Oncid like. The plant is erect
and looks like a braided ribbon, an unusual and attractive plant even when
not in flower. Often mistaken for an erect tassel fern ( Lycopodium fern).
The flowers are about 1.5 cm high, produced near the apex of the leafy
stem. Grows well on a piece of treefern in similar conditions as that for
Dendrobium and will grow into a specimen clump. Flowering size plants growing
carysotropsis. Exquisite minature, cream flowers, yellow
lip, 2.5cm. Forms multiflowered clump. Comes from New Guinea and is a warm
grower that does well on a piece of treefern or cork under dendrobium conditions.
Leptotes unicolor.Brazilian minature,
terete leaf, flowers to 2.5cm, waxy pink purple. Flowering size plants
growing on treefern where they will develop into specimen clumps.
wenzellii " Select"
A select clone that we have established as 3 plant clumps on treefern.
Best grown in a basket with a totem pole for the plants to climb. Once
over the top of the totem, the plants can be cut and started again at the
base to form a clump for multiflowering.
merrilli "compacta". Flowering size
plants in 75mm basket pots. This minature growing form produces a spike
of 2 or 3 lacquered yellow and chinese red very fragrant flowers. A warm
to intermediate grower, it will clump up into a specimen.
species linked to photographs and cultural notes.
ionosma. Branched spike, yellow spotted brown flowers, lip white,
heart shaped. This is not the climbing type Trichoglottis, so does best
in a basket or well drained pot. fragrant, long lived flowers.
reichenbachiana. A species from Venezuela.Warm grower, seems to
be free flowering, the flowers are pure white, fragrant. As for all Stanhopeas,
they require a basket where the pendulous spikes can grow thru the bottom.
Many different medias are used and the species seems to grow in almost
any media provided it stays damp but not wet.
Schomburgkia heidi. From Venezuela. Can anyone can provide
a description ? Schomburgkias are essentially large growing bulbous species
grown under the same conditions as cattleyas and Dendrobiums.
Rhyncostylis violacea, Anota violacea. Like Rhy gigantea,
white, spotted purple flowers on a fairly dense spike. A warm to intermediate
grower from the Philippines best grown in a small basket or well drained
philippinense. A very beautiful Philippines species.White, faint
blush pink, 7.5cm flowers of excellent shape on a long arching spike. A
basket or well drained pot in good shade with good air movement is required.
The pink colour is best seen when the flower is placed against a white
Phalaenopsis formosana. This is perhaps a polyploid form
of P aphrodite and was one of the original species used to produce the
modern white hybrids. Large overlapped petals/sepals, pure white,
to 7 cm, yellow and red marks on lip crest.
A basket or well drained pot and media with good air movment is
required, and this species is very tolerant of artificial orchid house
conditions, easy and robust to grow.
Ornithocephalus gladiatos. A minature
from Mexico, this fan like plant produces fantastic green white flowers.
Treefern slab or very small pot is the usual method of culture for this
intermediate grower, in a good shady spot.
Species highlighted are links to photos.
More photos at www.speciesorchids.com/photos.html
These are the Gems of the orchid world, with their
bright red to orange and yellow flowers, proportionally large, on minature
They are basically epiphytic or lithophytic species
that like a slab of treefern or a small well drained pot or basket.
Sophronitis coccinea and its synonyms (S. grandiflora
and S. militaris) are variable in size and colour, with scarlet red to
carmine purple and rose purple flowers. A lutino form , bright yellow,
Similar and perhaps a colour variant of
coccinea is S. rosea or wittigiana. This is the rose coloured form.
brevipedunculata is a more orange red flowered species, much the same
in growth as coccinea.
A slightly different plant is Sophronitis
cernua, which has a more flat creeping habit, and a many flowered infloresence
of mostly orange flowers with a yellow labellum.
Sophronitis are grown in the Nursery on either pieces
of cork or treefern fibre. Light conditions similar to that provided for
Dendrobiums or even slightly more sunlight will promote flowering. Weak
fertiliser is applied regularly and when the plants are not in active growth,
in the cooler months, less water is given.
An intermediate climate seems preferred, and hot
wet tropical weather is best handled by keeping the plants out of the torrential
rain. They are fairly tolerant and also grow well in cooler climates protected
from frost and cold wet conditions.
There are several other species and forms of Sophronitis,
and if the basic requirements are kept in mind, these gems will grace any
orchid collection with their brilliantly coloured flowers.
More photos at
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