365 days of orchids – day 601 – Masdevallia don quijote

This dramatic flower belongs to Masdevallia don quijote. This species is quite a small plant (12cm leaves) but has very large flowers on long stems. It is rather whimsically named after the character Don Quixote in the novel by Miguel de Cervantes because the dorsal sepal looks  like a lance and the lateral sepals like the bow legs of the old knight. (Quijote is the Spanish spelling)

The species is endemic to Ecuador where it is found between 1000 and 1700m in damp forest. Flower stems produce a succession of flowers over a long period so don’t cut stems until they finally turn brown.


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  1. Agnes Jones says:

    Do you have a photo of the rest of the plant?