365 days of orchids – day 237 – Penillabium struthio

This is a miniature species native to South East Asia and Malaysia that is recorded in hot lowland forest near rivers. It has soft leaves suggesting it prefers shaded conditions the flowers is produced successively on short pendulous spikes. We grow the plant mounted on cork where its flowers can be seen but they are very short lived so it is worth having a good look when a flower opens. Saying that, our young plant has spikes that continue to produce flowers for several months and I would guess that a mature plant would always have active spikes producing flowers.

The flowers are large for the size of the plant (2cm across) and they do have a remarkable lip with a spur.


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