Clear Mountain Garden Treasures
 

Clear Mountain Garden TreasuresMasdevallia (Pleurothallid Alliance)

Orchids
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseCattleya
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseCoelogyne
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseDendrobium
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseMasdevallia
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseNative Orchids
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseOncidium
Expand/CollapseExpand/CollapseTerestrials
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Glossary
pseudobulb
A swollen stem found mainly in orchids
see also Bulbs, Corms and Tubers.
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inflorescence
A flowering shoot with more than one flower.
Inflorescences may be branched or unbranched.
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inflorescence
A flowering shoot with more than one flower.
Inflorescences may be branched or unbranched.
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pseudobulb
A swollen stem found mainly in orchids
see also Bulbs, Corms and Tubers.
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inflorescence
A flowering shoot with more than one flower.
Inflorescences may be branched or unbranched.
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inflorescence
A flowering shoot with more than one flower.
Inflorescences may be branched or unbranched.
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primary-hybrid
A hybrid where both parents are straight species, in contrast to
a complex hybrid where one or both parents are themselves hybrids.
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Masdevallia (Pleurothallid Alliance)

Masdevallia is a genus of orchid with the characteristic three sided flowers, usually with three long thin appendages, called cordae. Most masdevallias in cultivation are cool growing, meaning they will grow without any additional heating, but is not frost hardy. The higher elevation species, such M. coccinea, actually dislikes our hot summers and should be shaded.

Masdevallias lack, or have very small pseudobulbs and thus need to always have access to water. Each growth consists of only one leaf, which will produce an inflorescence that usually only produce one flower. The plant makes a lot of growth and a well grown specimen is usually covered in flowers.

Examples of other genera included in this alliance are Dracula, Pleurothallis, Stelis and Restrepia.

The genus Dracula is closely related to Masdevallia, which it was previously classified under.

Dracula did not get its name from Count Dracula, the Vampire, but from Greek/Latin - which literally means little dragon. It comes from humid forests of the South American highlands, growing quite low down on trees. Most require cool shady conditions with lots of water. An unusual aspect of most Draculas is the flower inflorescence grown downwards and the flower opens facing downwards. For this reason, Draculas should be grown in mesh pots. When grown in ordinary pots, the flowers fail to make it out of the pot and will rot away.

The genus Dracula has some unusual shaped flowers, a few species with lips that look like mushrooms. There are even a few species where front on, the flower looks like a monkey's face!

Dracula flowers are notorious for collapsing if the plant is moved from where it is growing. This is particularly prevelant when the plant is moved from a cold into a warm spot, for example, indoors. The flowers can also collapse on hot sunny days.


Dracula bella
Dracula bella grows quite large flowers for the genus, that like most Dracula species, face downwards. It must be grown in a basket or pot with lots of holes to allow the downward growing inflorescences to exit the pot and flower. It comes from high country cloud forests of Colombia and Ecuador. [More...]
Dracula gigas
Unlike most Dracula species, Dracula gigas grows erect inflorescences and the flowers are carried above the leaves. It comes from high elevation cloud forests of Colombia and Ecuador. [More...]

Dracula vampira
This Dracula produces flowers that face downwards. It must be grown in a basket or pot with lots of holes to allow the downward growing inflorescences to exit the pot and flower. It comes from high country cloud forests of Ecuador. [More...]
Masdevallia coccinea
This Masdevallia species is very variable, having flowers that range in colour from white to reds and yellow, and all the hues in between. It comes from the high country of Peru and Colombia, growing as a lithophyte in the sub-alpine regions. [More...]

Masdevallia Hybrids
There is a large veriety of Masdevallia hybrids that have been created, ranging from the large cut flowers types that have long stems to compact pot plants with short inflorescences. Masdevallia species hybridise readily, producing a variety of colours, textures and flower sizes. [More...]
Masdevallia impostor
This Masdevallia produces flowers with unusually dark, almost black, flowers. It comes from intermediate to high country of Colombia and Venezuela. [More...]

Masdevallia melanopus
This Masdevallia species is one of the few that produce multiple flowers on an inflorescence. It comes from Peru, growing in damp forests in the high country. [More...]
Masdevallia patula
This Masdevallia species is one of the few that produce inflorescences that hang down. It is best grown in a basket or pot with lots of holes to allow the inflorescences to exit the pot and flower. [More...]

Masdevallia rolfeana
This small Masdevallia produces deep red, almost black, flowers on short inflorescences. It is best grown in small pots where the plant will flower all around the pot. It comes from intermediate to high elevations cloud forests in Costa Rica. [More...]
Masdevallia tovarensis
Another Masdevallia that produces multiple flowers on an inflorescence, it also has another interesting characteristic in that its inflorescences continue to produce flowers for several seasons. It comes from intermediate to high elevation areas of Tovar, Venezuela. [More...]

Pleurothallis truncata
This plant comes from the highlands of Ecuador. Its small orange flowers look like snail's eggs on top of the leaf. [More...]
Restrepia elegans
Restrepia is a genus of orchids that come from South America. The flowers bear a superficial resemblence to cockroaches, hence the common name. It comes from intermediate to high elevation wet montane forests of Venezuela, Colombia and Peru. [More...]

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