Friday, April 3, 2009
Maxillaria nigrescence orchid
Although this genus has captured the attention of many orchids growers, it has not achieved the heights of popularity reached by many other genera. This is perhaps surprising for it embraces a range of growing habits and most species have colourful, interesting flowers. With about 300 species, Maxillaria is a highly significant genus and provides an abundance of choice for growers who find these orchids to their liking.
These orchids are native from Mexico to West Indies and various countries in Central and South America, extending well into tropics of Argentina. While many found in the warmer forests, the genus reaches its greatest variety in the mountains especially the Andes in Peru and Brazil where most species occur.
These orchids are easy to cultivate and they like abundant air movement, regular watering except for a two or three week period after the pseudobulbs have matured when plants are kept on the dry side. They don't like excessive light and prefer more shadier situations.
My Maxillaria is var nigrescense and in autumn flowering with these beautiful burgundy color star shape flowers. The flowers arise in clusters of two or three from each pseudobulb. This species native to cloud forests at about 2,500m altitude and found in British Honduras and Guatemala. (another picture down the page)