Angraecum stella-africae

Family: Orchidaceae

Countries: Africa, Limpopo, Malawi, Zimbabwe

Angraecum stella-africae is an epiphytic orchid species from the forests of Malawi, Limpopo, and Southern Africa.  This miniature orchid produces a short-lived white flower that’s absolutely massive in comparison with the diminutive size of the plant.  Each bloom carries an exceptionally long spur that starts life curled up while the plant’s in bud; the spur gradually unfurls as the flower develops, eventually straightening when the green-tipped spur points to the ground, reaching far below the bloom.

In the wild, Angraecum stella-africae plants are often found growing on Brachystegia trees in a range approximately 1200-1500m.  In their natural environment, Angraecum stella-africae plants experience a drier, cooler winter.  Plants require semi shaded conditions with very humid growing conditions, especially during the summer months.

Angraecum stella-africae is a critically endangered orchid species that grows in very small populations that now occupy just a few locations.  The future of this rare orchid species is at great risk from collection for the orchid trade and due to the plant’s narrow range.

This orchid species specific epithet – stella-africae – means ‘star of Africa’.

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