The greenhouse is once again graced by the elegant sprays of large flowers from Cuitlauzina pendula.
The name pendula is well chosen as the flower spikes are dramatically pendulous which in the wild would hang the flowers below the branch the plant grows on.
This species which used to be known as Odontoglossum citrosmum is native to cool oak pine forests in Mexico from 1400 to 2200m where is experiences warm wet summers and cool dry winters.
We find that plants do best in baskets that allow for their pendulous flower spikes and hanging plants in the roof of our Cool Americas section during their dry winter rest. It seems that the dry winter rest is really important for flowering. This was one of the first orchids I grew as a teenager and seeing the flowers takes me back 40 years to my awe at these stunning flowers.
The flowers emerge from the new growths in the early summer and from flowering onwards we feed and water heavily until the new bulb is mature.
This plant will feature in my free online talk for the OSGB on Saturday 20th June – details and zoom link here.