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Conservatory Greenhouse

Maxillaria picta

An epiphytic, evergreen orchid producing a clump of small, oval-shaped pseudobulbs, 4-7cm tall and 2.5-4cm wide. Each pseudobulb is basally covered with thin, papery sheaths and carrying single, leathery, 20-40cm long and 4-5cm wide, linear leaf. In winter and spring, flowering stems emerge from the base of the pseudobulbs. Each stem up to 15cm long carries a single, 5cm large flower. Flowers are yellow to white, spotted dark red, purple or brown. Mature plants grown in optimal conditions often produce large numbers of flowering stems, flowering simultaneously amidst the leaves.

Synonyms
Brasiliorchis picta

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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Moisture
Well–drained, Moist but well–drained
pH
Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Yellow White Red Brown Green
Summer Green
Autumn Green
Winter Yellow White Red Brown Green
Position
  • Partial shade
Aspect

East–facing or North–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H1B
Botanical details
Family
Orchidaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Clump forming
Genus

A large, diverse genus of mainly epiphytic, tropical orchids, producing a clump of small, elliptic or egg-shaped pseudobulbs. Pseudobulbs are thickened basal parts of stem, serving as a storage of water and nutrients

Name status

Correct

Plant range
South America

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in an open, free-draining, medium-grade, bark-based orchid mix with addition of perlite, sphagnum moss or coir. Requires day temperatures around 18-20°C and 14-16°C at night. Provide good light levels, but avoid direct sunlight. Water plants thoroughly when compost is almost dry, allow to drain and use orchid fertiliser regularly during growing season. See also indoor orchid cultivation

Propagation

Propagation by seed is only possible in a controlled laboratory environment. Mature plants may be divided in early or mid spring, when the plant overgrows its container. Each division should have at least 3-4 healthy, older pseudobulbs with a sufficient amount of stored energy and water, to support new growth and reduce stress after repotting

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Houseplants
  • Conservatory and greenhouse
Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

May be susceptible to aphids, glasshouse red spider mite, scale insects and mealybugs

Diseases

Generally disease-free. Poor air movement and soggy potting mix may cause risk of bacterial infections

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