Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Ascocentrum Mona Church

We bought a lovely Ascocentrum Mona Church in flower from the Exotic Plant Company, and it survived the two day trip in the car, hanging from a headrest (and the week in the holiday accommodation) unscathed. Judging from the label attached to it, this specimen came from RF Orchids in Florida (USA), and is a hybrid of Ascocentrum miniatum (syn. garayi) x Ascocentrum ampullaceum. These Genus of about 6 species of orchids is native to southeast Asia and the Phillipines and prefer a fairly warm climate (as you'd expect, given where they come from).

Like most of our orchids, they're epiphytic, but apparently they really don't like being grown in any kind of medium; they're potted straight into baskets with no potting medium at all (like our Rhynchostylis). I water them very regularly (by drenching the roots once or twice a day) whilst misting all the plants.

One thing that's quite hard to see in the pictures is a beautiful, almost crystalline pattern inside the petals as the light shines through from the back of the flower.