Orchids flowering inside my Orchidarium today!
I designed this Orchidarium in 2017; it was constructed in the early spring of 2017. If you’re interested in the materials I’ve used, you can see the step-by-step process of my Orchidarium build here. I thought I’d share some of these pretty orchid blooms with you. These orchids are all in bloom inside my Orchidarium, today.
Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta
I took some pictures earlier this week, so I could show you this Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta specimen, as its flowers opened.
You might be able to spot a few snails on the roots of this orchid. I have a large tribe of pesky little snails that are living happily ever after, inside my Orchidarium! The snails eat well; dining out on lush new leaf growth. I collect these snails up whenever I can and relocate them.
I also have a colony of dastardly miniature aphids living inside this Orchidarium. Aphids have sharp, piercing mouthpieces, which they use to puncture plant stems and leaves. Their adapted mouthpieces allow the aphids to suck out and feast on the plant’s sap. They take sustenance from the plant and weaken it, as they feed.
The aphids inside my Orchidarium have colonised the orchids, as well as the ferns, and the terrarium plants that are growing at the base of the planting, inside this enclosure. I regularly spray the plants inside my Orchidarium, but these aphids are the tiniest I’ve seen, I can usually only spot them on a zoomed in photograph. Due to their small, it’s easy for these aphids to hide under leaves, in cracks and crevices and escape the spraying. As aphids reproduce so quickly, even one or two aphids can rapidly establish a large colony. So far, I’ve been unable to eliminate these aphids, but the SB Plant Invigorator I use has allowed me to control them.
I hasten to add that none of these creatures are welcome guests. I do not wish to trap any creatures inside my terrariums, least of all orchid pests! In addition to the snails and aphids, I also have millipedes and bark lice living inside this Orchidarium.
I love Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta! This is a truly beautiful orchid species that originates from Kenya and Africa. Plants produce pendant, arching flowering stems which are adorned with these very glamorous looking white flowers with red lipstick coloured centres.
The Aerangis you see here has been growing inside my Orchidarium for a few years. This is the plant’s third flowering. Currently, my Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta specimen’s flowering stem measures 9cm (3.5 inches). It’s all very well me giving you the measurements of my plants, but here’s a photograph I’ve taken of Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta with my husband’s thumb, to accurately show you the scale of this miniature orchid and its flowers.
Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta flowers are fragrant. The flowers produce a light, delicate fragrance, which is sweet and very pleasing. This is not an orchid that will fill a room with perfume, it really is a subtle scent. You need a close encounter with Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta flowers to take in their perfume.
I enjoy watching Aerangis luteo-alba var. rhodosticta flower buds as they open. The buds begin opening in a vertical position, facing forwards, before tilting and moving upwards to rest horizontally, where they remain, as the blooms open fully.
If you’re interested in Aerangis luteoalba var. rhodosticta, you might enjoy reading this article I wrote about this particular orchid.
Oncidium hians plants start life as miniature orchids, but once these plants are established, they soon become larger specimens that produce much taller flower spikes. I’d class Oncidium hians as a miniature to small sized orchid species. The plants themselves are quite small, but they do produce tall flowering stems. I measured this Oncidium hians specimen’s taller flowering stem earlier today when it measures 36cm (14.2 inches).
If you’re interested, you can see this same Oncidium hians specimen’s first flowering in this update for my Orchidarium, in June 2018. Here’s a closer look at one of this same Oncidium hians specimen’s flowering this week, in August 2019.
Phalaenopsis deliciosa and Phalaenopsis deliciosa var. alba
I’ve got both Phalaenopsis deliciosa and the white form, Phalaenopsis delciosa var. alba, in bloom inside my Orchidarium, today. Phalaenopsis deliciosa and Phalaenopsis delciosa var. alba, orchid flowers both have a crystalline look and a bit of a sparkle, they’re so pretty!
These Phalaenopsis delciosa and Phalaenopsis deliciosa var. alba specimens have produced a number of flowering stems, they all measure around 11cm (4.3 inches) long.
Sadly, these Phalaenopsis deliciosa and Phalaenopsis deliciosa var. alba flowers are not scented, but these orchids are floriferous; each flowering stem produces many buds, with the flowers opening one after the other in sequence.
Here’s a look at these Phalaenopsis celebensis flowers as they develop.
Look how tall this Phalaenopsis celebensis specimen’s flowering stem is! This particular Phalaenopsis celebensis specimen has been growing inside my Orchidarium since October 2017, this is the plant’s first ever flowering.
In case you’re wondering, this Phalaenopsis celebensis specimen’s flowering stem measured 30cm (12 inches) when I examined and measured it today (16th August 2019).
Phalaenopsis celebensis flowers look rather like a twirl of exotic butterflies or moths in flight. The pure white flowers have a reflexed habit, with two petals – one at either side – bearing markings that resemble burnt caramel or the topping of a creme brûlée! The column is a bubblegum pink colour.
So far, two flower Phalaenopsis celebensis buds have aborted. Hopefully, the majority of the other buds you can see in these pictures, will open and flower successfully.
Even in bud Phalaenopsis celebensis is a handsome sight. However, I do worry that it is only a matter of time until I snap this orchid’s flowering stem. It’s almost a miracle that it is still intact. This flowering stem first emerged in April 2019, the flowers are now opening, four months later. It’s wonderful to be able to share the joy of these orchid flowers with you.
Other articles that may interest you………..
To see a planting list with orchids, ferns, and lots of plants that are ideally suited to growing in terrariums (complete with the details of the nurseries I have purchased my plants from), please click here.
To see the step-by-step process of my Orchidarium build, please click here.
To see the step-by-step process of my Rainforest Terrarium build, please click here.
To see my Madagascar Terrarium, please click here.
To see my White Orchid Trial, please click here.