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Discussion in 'Orchid Species' started by Alexey, Sep 4, 2016.
One of the rupicolous lalelias.
So delicate and beautiful!
I still have not mastered the culture of the rupicolous Laelias. You clearly are growing it very well. Any culture tips?
Well done! I too would like to know what medium you are using.
Kelly and Marni, I have it in terracotta pot with medium size red lava rock. It receives cattleya like light and similar to all collection watering & fertilizing treatment. I was lucky to acquire small collection of nine rupicolous laelias during last three years. Looks like during growing season they prefer to have their roots to be more on evenly wet side then wet - dry cycle as one could think. Perhaps that is why lava rock works well, retaining moisture for a long time. At least eight plants grow well and only Laelia crispata is reluctant to establish. When new division is just repotted it will help to keep it under phalaenopsis like light until new growth gives good roots.
In a discussion I had with Alan Koch (Gold Country Orchids), he mentioned that these laelias originate in areas with very high iron content in the soils. They iron is taken up and later exuded by the trees that host the epiphytes, so they are getting a higher-than-average level of iron, as well.
I don't know this for a fact, but might not red lava rock be pretty high in iron?
Thank you Ray for noticing that. There were several discussions at forums about iron content in red lava rock and possible contributions to or disadvantages for orchid growth. Often being litophytes on iron reach hills, rupicolous laelias perhaps can benefit from red lava rock as a potting media.
Thanks for sharing
Thanks, Alexey for the cultural information. When I was in Brazil we did see one rupiculous laelia that was growing near an iron mine. When you picked up a small rock from the area, it was very heavy. I can't remember the name of it right now. The other species we saw were not in those conditions.