Platystele schmidtchenii – 365 days of orchids – day 1586
Expanding our range in South America Week comes this tiny miniature with a rather a long name. Although the name schmidchenii reminds us of the word smidgen, meaning little bit of something – how appropriate!
Platystele schmidchenii is native to wet forests from Peru to Colombia from 1000 to 2400m altitude and is rather extraordinary for the enormous amount of flower it produces on upright stems held well clear of the 2cm long leaves.
Our plants seem to be doing well mounted but I am sure they would also be happy in pots or baskets. The species is closely related to Platystele misasiana (below) but with longer spikes and slightly larger brown and red flowers.
The species is at home in our Cool Americas section (min12C) with daily spraying.