365 days of orchids – day 262 – Bulbophyllum sessile

This small flowered Bulbophyllum species is native to South East Asia and Malaysia. It is a member of the oxysepela section of Bulbophyllum where flowers are unusually produced from the rhizome between the small pseudobulbs. The small flowers are produced in profusion giving a very attractive plant.

The plant grows high in evergreen trees at around 1000m and we find it prefers to grow quite cool and the plant shown is growing in Cool Americas where it seems much happier than where it previously lived in Warm Asia. The plant is quite straggly with its long rhizome but seems keen to wrap itself around its mount and so will be very neat in the long run as it develops into a ball of fleshy light green leaves and rhizomes covered in flowers every autumn.


365 days of orchids – day 261 – Pleurothallis sonderana

Another mini miniature species is Pleurothallis sonderana. The species is endemic to Southern Brazil where it grows as an epiphyte in cool moist forest.

We find Pleurothallis sonderana is a vigorous plant that forms a great little specimen and can be easily propagated by division. We always grow the species mounted and the plant shown has completely covered its 3cm x 4cm cork mount.

We grow plants shaded in Cool Americas and spray it daily.


365 days of orchids – day 260 – Stelis hallii

This relatively large flowered stelis species is found in cool mossy forests in Ecuador, Colombia and Peru as an epiphyte or lithophyte from 1200 to 3000m altitude.

This is the ninth stelis species we have included in 365 days reflecting both the diversity of the genus (there are around 500 stelis species) and the large number of species we grow at Writhlington. We first met the genus in the cloud forests around Macae de Cima in Brazil and ever since we have been to show what rewarding and interesting plants these are.



365 days of orchids – day 259 – Cattleya amethystoglossa


This is a bi-foliate Cattleya from Eastern Brazil where it grows as a lithophyte on rocks at around 500m altitude. When grown well it has tall bulbs and up to twenty flowers on a spike.

To match its habitat it enjoys warm bright conditions and a well drained compost. We find it does best in a basket with just course bark. The lithophytic orchids we have seen in Brazil in similar conditions produce abundant roots that cling to the rock and are able to collect ample water when rain falls but dry out completely for periods in the  dry season (our winter) when not in growth.