365 days of orchids – day 302 – Aerangis verdickii

This Aerangis species is found right across central and east Africa where it grows in woodland and copes with seasonal dry periods by storing water in its thick roots which form an extensive root system over time. It has grey green, waxy leaves also evolved to reduce water loss. The large waxy flowers have 16cm spurs.

It is of special interest to us as a Rwandan species and so our plant is a useful seed source for our partner projects in Rwanda. We have seen the species in Rwanda showing how it copes with a dry climate (see photo below) on a tree in the capital Kigali.

We do have a large number of seedlings of this species in out laboratory and as well as sharing these with our partners in Rwanda will have plants for sale in about twelve months time.

We grow the species in Warm Asia hanging in the roof where it receives good light, high temperatures and dries quickly after watering.

We currently have four species of Aerangis in flower and recommend this genus as a rewarding one to grow. We have trialled Aerangis as house plants and many seem very well suited to indoor culture.


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