This lovely species is one of our special orchids and the plant here was grown in our propagation laboratory from seed collected in Brazil in 2005.
We first found the species, during our expedition in April 2000, growing as an epiphyte on the shrub Vellosia growing on bare granite slopes on the in the Organ Mountains West of Novo Friburgo. (Photo below)
We went back to the habitat on our second Brazil expedition in October 2006 and found the same plants again. The leaves of Pseudolaelia appear to mimic the rough leaves of Vellosia which presumably reduce the chance of grazing and Scott recorded leaf dimensions of the Pseudolaelia and Villosia for his A Level applied science research unit. (Scott and his fellow students below)
When the orchid is not in flower it would be hard to spot if it wasn’t for the long flower spikes coming out through the top of the the Villosia shrub.
We grow the species in our Warm Asia section and have found that the best way to manage its spreading habit it to grow it in a mushroom crate so that it has excellent drainage but roots can work into compost rather than fresh air.
Thanks to Dick Warren and all at the Rio Atlantic Forest Trust for taking us to this fantastic habitat.