Today’s prize orchid has to be this remarkable Pleurothallis laden with thousands of golden flowers.
We are massive fans of the diverse genus Pleurothallis and some of the species produce massive amounts of flower. This species is one we have yet to positively identify (i will add a close up of a single flower once students return after christmas) but thanks to Mark Wilson who suggests it is a Crocodeilanthe species. Crocodeilanthe has been a section within Pleurothallis that has been separated to a separate genus or included in Stelis. At the moment we are content to keep all our pleurothallis together and not divide the genus. The plant was donated to us with the name baeza which is a town in Ecuador and we therefore assume that the species is native to the cloud forests around Baeza.
This year the plant has really flourished in our Cool Asia section with lots of water and is growing larger (leaves to 50cm high) with more flower spikes per leaf – usually four – and flowers more spread on the spikes (last year’s flowering below)
We are now ready to divide the plant so that by next Christmas we will have lots of plants available.