Dendrobium unicum – 365 days of orchids – day 1608

In the midst of this cold wet May it is lovely to be cheered by the bright colours of orchid species like this small growing delight from South East Asia.

We have seen Dendrobium unicum in regrowth forest in Southern Laos around Paksong on the Bolaven Plateaux where it seemed to prefer small trees on poor soils amongst mossy rocks. The small plants flower as small seedling which we estimated at around three years old and plants experience good light in the open forests.

Flowers are long lasting and the glossy surface adds to the effect of the startling orange. The flowers are likely to be bird pollinated along with orange flowered  Dendrobiums across Asia (a group we are very fond of)

Our plants were at 1200m altitude although they have been reported from 800-1550m indicating a tolerance for a range of temperatures although we find that they prefer to grow in our warm Asia section (min17C), though a cooler, dryer winter rest helps with flowering. Plants are semi deciduous as is their forest home so avoid extreme dry in the winter and never let bulbs shrivel.


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