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2016 Vivi's Orchid Corner

Vivi's Orchids since 1995

Rhyncholaliea glauca, January 2016, Vol. 20, Issue 1

Dear Orchid Friends:

Happy New Year! The new year reminds me of things clean, crisp, and beautiful.

Thus, January 2016 article highlights an orchid with these qualities, Rhyncholaelia glauca. This orchid was formerly known as Brassavola glauca, and was classified a few years ago.


Rhyncholaelia glauca is a species and is native to Mexico and Central America, especially Guatemala and Honduras. Their habitat is quite wide ranging from sea level up to 1500 meters, and grow on trees in mountainous forests.


Rhyncholaelia glauca is a medium sized plant and has pseudobulbs and leaves quite similar to those of cattleyas. Interestingly, their care requirements are quite closely related to cattleyas as well. Pseudobulbs are covered with papery sheaths. These orchids grow well if mounted on cork bark, tree fern plaques, or slatted baskets or can be grown in pots.


General care: Light requirements mimic cattleyas - bright light with some direct sunlight.

Watering should be moderate and only after potting mixture becomes dry. Roots should dry between waterings. Provide good circulation as well and tolerates warm to intermediate temperatures.


Flowers: The flower size is about 5 inches (12 cm) and the plant bears one flower per stem.

Flowers have a heavy waxy substance and last for quite some time. Petals and sepals are elliptical and have the sepals are characteristic of Brassavolas, being distinct and separate. Flowers are a beautiful light green to cream color with a white heart shaped, gently frilled lip. This orchid can have a faint pink hue occasionally. Flowers are wonderfully fragrant at night and generally blooms late spring to summer.


Rhyncholaelia glauca is such a lovely orchid, appearing delicate and strong at the same time. Its beauty allows it to "stand alone" and command ones attention.  This orchid has many qualities of the brassavolas, which one can understand why it was originally classified with brassavolas. The waxiness and substance can be seen in the Rhyncholaelia genus.

This is a great orchid and easy to grow.

Until next time,
Vivi's Orchids, www.viviorchids.com


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