365 days of orchids – day 52 – Cattleya trianae

Cattleya trianae is the national flower of Colombia and is endemic to that country. In our greenhouses it always flowers in February where its very large flowers always create a stir. The plant shown is our largest specimen and is the typical form with light pink petals and sepals with a darker lip. The lip colour changes to yellow up inside the lip presumably to help the pollinating bee locate its reward.

We have another clone labelled Cattleya trianae ‘alba’ which is yellow and white apart from a slight pink edge to the lip (see below)

We grow all our Cattleya trianaes in baskets filled with a course bark and no moss. The plants produce masses of roots and we keep them just damp in the winter but much wetter when in summer growth. We hang the baskets up in Warm Americas where they get lots of light (the auto shading is activated at 500 Whatts/ square metre)

The natural habitat for this species is in open forests in the Colombian mountains at around 1000m altitude so a minimum of 15C as it gets in Warm Americas is about right.

Don’t forget, you can see this plant at the West Of England Orchid Show (this Saturday West Monkton village hall).


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