Our second day at the Bee and Pollination Festival and here are some more of our display orchids. Below is Stenoglottis fimbriata, from South Africa. It is pollinated by butterflies. Stenoglottis grows on riverbanks where, in the wet season, it has lovely green, spotty leaves and beautiful pink flowers. In the dry season the leaves die back and the orchid retreats below ground where it waits for the rain to come and then grows new leaves again. We water our Stenoglottis orchids well, when they are in leaf, as they like to be wet but as soon as the leaves begin to turn brown we stop watering and let them go dormant. In the spring, usually February for us, the leaves begin to grow and we resume watering.
Here is our hummingbird pollinated Masdevallia paiveana from Peru. We grow it in our Cool Americas section of the greenhouse. Masdevallia paiveana is a friendly orchid which tends to like visiting other plant’s pots where it will grow away quite happily keeping its neighbour company.
Cymbidium suavissimum is pollinated by small bees. The orchid comes from the Himalayas and we grow it with most of our other Cymbidiums in the Temperate section of the greenhouse. I think it is unusual and not nearly as showy as our other Cymbidiums.
Next is Oncidium blanchetii with a very long flower spike, over a meter long. The orchid grows such a long flower spike to hold the flowers above the grasses and scrub with which it grows. It comes from Brazil and is the second orchid on our display that is pollinated by bees. In our greenhouse this Oncidium lives in our Cool Americas section.
The white petals of Epidendrum ciliare, from Central America, shine out in the dark so that it’s moth pollinator can see it but the orchid does not give the moth any nectar in return for pollination. In the wild Epidendrum ciliare grows in Central America.
Our third and final bee pollinated orchid is Coelogyne speciosa. The large flower needs a large bee to pollinate it. This Coelogyne comes from Malaysia. It enjoys growing in the Warm Asia section of the greenhouse and likes plenty of water.
All our orchids are now safely back in the greenhouse. Their next outing will be The Devon Autumn Show at Burnham Nurseries on Sunday October 15th. Hope to see you there.