WSBEorchids

365 days of orchids – day 130 – Vanda ampulacea

This small growing Vanda species (which is also known as Ascocentrum ampulaceum) is one of the most dramatic species we have seen flowering in Sikkim on our expeditions.

It grows abumdantly as an epiphyte in hot valleys from 200-500m altitude where it clings to trunks, branches and twigs if deciduous and semi-evergreen trees . It has to cope with a dry winter exposed to the sun and it does this by developing a very extensive root system that can store a lot of water. (see plant in site below)

Note the  lack of moss on the tree trunk showing the dry conditions experienced at low altitude in the dry season. We grow this species in a basket in open bark compost and keep it in Warm Asia (min 20C) for most of the year apart from a short completely dry rest in the roof of Cool Asia (minimum 10C) during February. Moving the plant back to warm conditions initiates flowering.

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