365 days of orchids – day 240 – Bulbophyllum carunculatum


This epiphytic Bulbophyllum is endemic to the island of Sulawesi, part of the Indonesian islands. It produces a number of sequential flowers throughout the summer on a long upright flower spike. The flowers are typically yellow with an almost black lip, this colour form seems to be relatively uncommon with its orange petals and veining. The flowers carry an unpleasant fragrance which is used to attract the fly pollinator for the species.


365 days of orchids – day 239 – Restrepia cymbula

Restrepias provide flowers in our orchid collection throughout the year and several flower on and off all year. Restrepis cymbula is one of our smaller flowered species but plants regularly produce a good show of flowers as it is this week. The name means boat and refers to the unusual shape of the synsepal which makes this an easy restrepia to identify. The species is endemic to Ecuador.

We grow restrepias mounted, potted and in baskets and find that baskets are a good way of growing and displaying specimen plants like this one.

We grow our restrepias cool (minimum 12C) and well watered throughout the year.


365 days of orchids – day 238 – Stelis nexipous


This is one of our most floriferous stelis species.  The name ‘nexipous’ means duck’s foot and describes the shape of the flowers which is unlike any other stelis in our collection. The dense spikes are very upright and secund (all the flowers facing one way) giving a dramatic display that lasts for several months.

The species is native to Ecuador and Peru where it is found in forests from 700-2400m and as less of a cloud forest specialist than some of the genus it is a strong rooting plant and robust species to grow. Our large plant, shown here, is rapidly developing into a specimen plant and will soon completely envelop its basket. Flowering is reliably seasonal starting in August each year.


365 days of orchids – day 237 – Penillabium struthio

This is a miniature species native to South East Asia and Malaysia that is recorded in hot lowland forest near rivers. It has soft leaves suggesting it prefers shaded conditions the flowers is produced successively on short pendulous spikes. We grow the plant mounted on cork where its flowers can be seen but they are very short lived so it is worth having a good look when a flower opens. Saying that, our young plant has spikes that continue to produce flowers for several months and I would guess that a mature plant would always have active spikes producing flowers.

The flowers are large for the size of the plant (2cm across) and they do have a remarkable lip with a spur.