I am sure that those who joined Orchid Christmas last night enjoyed being shown this lovely species by Kate – and being invited to smell it!. The reason that Kate chose to feature Coelia bella was because of its gorgeous (and very seasonal) scent of marzipan.
The colours aren’t traditionally festive, but close your eyes and you are in the middle of a sweet Christmas delight – perhaps we should guard this plant as it smells as if it could be Stollen!!!! (sorry that is an awful pun)
This unusual flower with bright pink sepal tips and a contrasting yellow lip is a fragrant addition to the greenhouse in winter. It has possibly the prettiest buds of any orchid species we grow.
This species is a terrestrial from Central America where it is found from 500-1500m in open forests. We find that the species prefers to grow in our Warm Americas section (min 15C) but in a shady spot as it can suffer with black areas on the leaves if exposed to too much sun or heat stress.