Coelogyne speciosa var.albicans – 365 days of orchids – day 1683

The summer can be a period with fewer species in flower but we can rely on warm growing Coelogynes to provide summer interest. Coelogyne speciosa is a real favourite as it is very floriferous and has enormous flowers with the most fantastic lip.

This large flowered Coelogyne is native to Malaysia, Borneo, Java and Sumatra where it is reported from 700-2000m altitude. This variety has more white on the lip than is usual and a light green flower colour where the more usual colour is variations of yellow and brown.

We grow the species in Warm Asia (min 18C) although its range indicates that it could be grown cooler. It reminds us of its habitat in the wonderful mountains of Sarawak. International visits are still not a possibility but we hope to return to Sarawak as at some stage in 2022.

Each short flower stem produces two or three  flowers that bloom successively but as you can see a mature plant produces flowers from several bulbs at once and gives a lovely display.

We keep the species well watered throughout the year. It produces the odd flower at anytime through the year but the main flowering is in the summer.

The large hairy lip is well worth a close inspection. The species is pollinated by large bees.


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