Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Dendrobium jerdonianum

Dendrobium jerdonianum
A rare Dendrobium found at high altitudes of Western Ghats.... Many color forms of this beautiful species is found in nature starting from White to bright creamish yellow to orange in color. Flowering season Nov- Dec.

Monday, March 5, 2012

A Terrestrial Beauty In Deep Forest Cover

Calanthe sylvatica,   SynCalanthe masuca 

A very beautiful orchid found on the forest floor. Comes in various colors ranging from almost whitish pink to purple to deep purple. They love deep shade of trees and shrubs. Most of the time we notice these plants by its striking flowers. The leaves will be hidden below a layer of shrubs and wines.

 A very interesting feature of this plant is that the lip of the older flowers turn bright orange. They flower irrespective of the season while under cultivation. But in nature I found them flowering in July-August. I've come across these beauties at higher elevations above 1000m ASL. Butt they grow well and flower in plains as well. Grow them away from bright sunlight...

 Calanthe sylvatica under cultivation
 Calanthe sylvatica under cultivation
 Lips of the older fowers turn orange

Calanthe sylvatica growing in deep forest cover

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Cymbedium bicolor

Cymbedium bicolor is a fairly common orchid found in Kerala. This species grows to form big clumps. The leathery, thick leaves are 60 - 90 cms long.

Recently I came across this plant near Kanjirappally in Kerala. It was growing on a tree stump by the road side. I could count more than fifty bunches of flowers on this magnificent specimen. Generally, the flowering period for this species is from January to April. I've found them blooming in other seasons too. 

This is one of the heat tolerant type cymbedium species and hence nowadays widely used for breeding heat tolerant strains of hybrid Cymbediums, which is becoming more and more popular.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Miniature Beauty From The Deep Jungle

Porpax jerdoniana (Wight ) Rolfe

Porpax jerdoniana (Wight ) Rolfe growing on a tree 

This orchid loves deep shade with dampness. Seen near the waterfalls or streams in deep rain forests...The dark purple color of the leaves match that of the bark of the tree, thus giving them a natural camouflage .. Not easily spotted...Not a commonly seen orchid...Blooms in July ..Aug... I found them at an altitude of around 100-150m above MSL...

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Dendrobium With a Spicy Fragrance

An orchid with a spicy fragrance from the 'Land of Spices'!!  Yes!! The fragrance of Dendrobium aquem is somewhat similar to that of Den. crumenatum ( Pigeon Orchid ). Flowers are about 4cm and they bloom in Sept - Oct. I've read about them many years back, but have started growing them just couple of years back. It is an easy plant for even the beginners and it readily flowers. After the flowering the leaves fall off and the plant takes a rest during winter. New growth starts by Feb - March.
Dendrobium aqueum

Dendrobium aqueum
Dendrobium aqueum

Dendrobium aqueum


Friday, May 20, 2011

A Pretty Dendrobium

Here is a Dendrobium with attractive lilac colour occring in altitudes around 500M above MSL. The flower shape is very similar to that of Den. ovatum except its colour. I am not sure about its identity. The flowers last for 3 - 4 weeks. They are lithophytes ( growing on rocks ) and flowers during Feb - March.
Dendrobium barbatulum - pink

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Tongue Orchid of Kerala

We have heard about different nick names for different types of orchids. Dove orchid (Peristeria elata), Palm orchids (Spathoglottis), Moth orchid (Phalaenopsis), Tiger orchid (Grammatophyllum), Pigeon orchid (Den. crumenatum), Black  Orchid (Trichoglottis brachiata), Scorpion Orchid (Arachnis), Dancing Princess (Oncidiums), The Nun Orchid (Phaius) etc. are some of them.

In Kerala we have 'The Tongue Orchid'. The botanical name is Bulbophyllum fuscopurpureum. I've seen it growing only on rocks (Lithophyte). They are found at an altitude of around 1000M above MSL.

Bulbophyllum fuscopurpureum - Excitement at seeing the buds.

Bulbophyllum fuscopurpureum - Buds developing

Bulbophyllum fuscopurpureum in bloom.

I find them  very difficult plants to grow. The difference in temperature might be the reason. Any how I had them blooming at my home last year. The flowering time is Feb- March.