Bulbophyllum nymphopolitanum – 365 days of orchids – day 1841

Our Year 7 team this year in the greenhouse are fantastic and to them every orchid that opens is a new experience. Today’s orchid is more of an experience that most with its foul smelling flowers the colour of blood.

Whenever Bulbophyllum nymphopolitanum flowers it gets passed around greenhouse club so everyone gets to experience the horrible smell. Most students describe it as horse poo but worse, and I think it smells more like Rhino poo. It is certainly an impressive piece of evolution and must fool its pollinating flies every time.

Bulbophyllum nymphopolitanum grows in warm evergreen forest in the Philippines at around 1000m and in shade. We replicate these conditions in our warm Asia section and keep plants watered throughout the year with no distinct rest period. Apart from the fascinating flowers, the species has very attractive dark leaves and makes a compact smallish plant.


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