A large-sized, evergreen, epiphytic orchid with slender, ovoid pseudobulbs and narrowly oval, 45-80cm long and approximately 2cm wide leaves. Corn-yellow flowers, 5cm across, are produced in dense, arching racemes from autumn to winter carrying 18-40 flowers.
Ultimate height0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height2–5 years
Ultimate spread0.5–1 metres
Colour & scent
- Partial shade
East–facing or West–facing
- Native to the UK
- Clump forming
- Potentially harmful
- Skin allergen. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling
Cymbidium are epiphytic, lithophytic or terrestrial orchids with prominent spherical to ovoid pseudobulbs, long linear leaves and fleshy white roots. Several long lasting showy flowers with a distinctive 3-lobed lip are borne on erect or arching flower spikes from the bases of the pseudobulbs
- Name status
- Plant range
- Himalaya, W China
How to grow
Grow in an open, free-draining orchid compost with addition of perlite, sphagnum moss or coir. Requires day temperatures around 16°C and 10°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. Reduce watering in winter. Place outside in dappled shade during the summer months to aid flower initiation. See cymbidium cultivation for more detailed information.
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 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
- Conservatory and greenhouse
No pruning required. Cut down flowered stems to base.
Generally disease-free. Sterilising cutting tools may prevent virus diseases, such as Cymbidium Mosaic Virus (CMV).
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