365 days of orchids – day 619 – Dendrobium fairchildiae
This is a very large growing Dendrobium native to the Philippines and one of the stars of the Greenhouse in September. The species grows pendulous pseudobulbs more than 2m long that become deciduous before flowering over a period of several years.
The flowers are produced simultaneously on old bulbs aged from around two to five years old and form clusters near the end of the bulbs. The flowers are large (5cm across) and attractively splashed in pink.
The species is reported as growing on exposed rocks above 1200m but we find it does best in a basket hung high in Warm Asia so that the long pseudobulbs can hang freely (see below). As you can see there are no flowers on the actively growing bulbs that still have leaves. The close up is of the group of pink flowers in the bottom right of the photo.