365 days of orchids – day 16 – Gongora Catilligera

gongora-catilligeraThis fragrant orchid is found in Columbia usually at around 1000m and the most consistent sent identification we have had is adhesive tape. This genus has a pendulous flower spike that hangs down which means we have to hang them up when the flower spike appears. There is very little research and information on this orchid probably because the genus Gongora is amongst the hardest to identify by looks. This is due to the fact that their pollinator, a euglossine or perfume bee, finds and identifies it by smell.


365 days of orchids – day 15 – Pleurothallis restrepiodes

jan-pleurothallis-retrepiodes issy-1

Hi I’m Issy and I’m in year 8 at Writhlington school and I’m in the orchid project. This is me in cool Americas with todays orchid. I particularly like Pleurothallis restrepiodes because it is purple, it looks great from underneath, and really surprisingly it smells of wet cat.

This species comes from Colombia, Ecuador and Peru where it grows in cool wet forest. I have heard that one time we had ice on this plant and it didn’t kill it so it is obviously very tough. It also propagates really easily from keikis that grow in the top of older leaves.


365 days of orchids – day 13 – Dracula bella

dracula-bella-1Our names are Eleanor and Tabby (heads of cool america), and we are telling you about Dracula bella. In latin Dracula Bella means the beautiful Dracula. This amazing plant is a bright reddish pink colour with a bright white lip. This deceiving orchid tricks fungus gnats into laying its eggs on it by creating a fake fungi thus the gnats unknowingly pollinate Dracula! We have to grow it in a basket as the flower grows downwards this is a good tip if you are growing them at home. This orchid is one of the most interesting of all the orchids in the green houses.

This second photo shows the same flower side on.


Oh, don’t forget that tomorrow will be your chance to vote for orchid of the week.