For Christmas Eve we have the species that started 365 days of orchids 1794 days ago on 1st January 2017 – I am delighted we have posted an orchid a day every day since – following the rule that the species must be in flower in our collections on the day it is posted. Cattleya percivaliana is our mid winter cattleya with the flowers opening around Christmas day each year.
Many of the uni-foliate (one leaved) Cattleya species look superficially similar but we find that one of the clearest distinctions is flowering time, and this species always flowers at the turning of the year. C. percivaliana is also identifiable by the single sheath, the short (15cm) flattened pseudobulbs, and by the unusual rather deep and markings on the lip.
Cattleya percivaliana is endemic to Venezuela where it is found as an epiphyte and on rocks from 1400-2000m altitude in good light. We grow the species in Warm Americas and hang plants in baskets above the door where plants produce copious roots that hang down from the basket.