Phalaenopsis pulchra – 365 days of orchids – day 1687
Phalaenopsis is a wonderfully diverse genus and I will feature a couple of dramatic smaller growing species this week. The first is Phalaenopsis pulchra with astonishing bright pink, glossy, flowers.
This warm growing epiphytic species, native to the Philippines, is a small plant which produces a few flowers successively on a short spike hat gives flowers through the summer and the autumn so we will will have flowers until the end of November. The species also has the ability to produce longer spikes up to 60cm long and instead of bearing flowers they produces multiple keikis, which, in the wild, are used to produce a colony of plants on the host tree. For us the keikis give straight forward propagation material but we always wait until keikis have plenty of roots.
The natural habitat is hot and shaded and we keep plants in our warm Asia section (min 17C) although the species would appreciate a warmer minimum temperature. To compensate we hang the plants high in the greenhouse where temperatures are always a few degrees higher than down on the benches.