Peristeria elata

Other Genera Species

Originally published in The Florida Orchidist

Posted by Sys Admin about 11 years ago.


This article references Per. elata.
Article Blog   Article Index

This plant has long been one of my favourites. It is a terrestrial and loves warm growing conditions. It is the national flower of Panama where it grows as a terrestrial in loamy soil and humus pockets among rocks. Cultural notes suggest that it prefers hot conditions with 30-50% light. It grows exceptionally well in North Queensland conditions with little attention to cultural niceties. The plant grows with an enormous egg shaped pseudobulb which on my mature plants have been 12 to 15 cm across and 15 to 20 cm high. The long arching single leaf is about 15 cm wide at the middle tapering at each end. The leaf has many transverse corrugations that remind you of the immature growth on palm leaves.

The flower spike can be two metres in length. The spike emerges from the base of the bulb like a new growth. The flowers are brilliant white and have a hard waxy texture. They are cup shaped and can be 5cm across. If you look through the opening of the flower the column and lip combined is shaped like a dove looking back at you and has reddish spotting. Hence a common name the Dove orchid. These flowers last from three to seven days each and flower consecutively up the spike. My plant has twenty flowers opened or in bud. This should mean a flowering period of two months.

The thing I like most about this orchid is the perfume. In the middle of the day it has a most pleasant heady aroma. It is quite spicy and appealing.

These plants like moist growing conditions. If you can’t provide the warmth it won’t flower. I have found from bitter experience the difficulties in growing in Brisbane. I grow in good quality potting mix. Slugs are particularly fond of the new tips of the large roots. For years I had a mature plant that survived without thriving. I decided to repot and found every new root had a couple of fat juicy slugs suckling on the end. I now take steps to deter the slugs. The plants are susceptible to sunburn. I grow mine under fifty percent shade.

Share on Social Media:  
Log in to Add a Comment

New Topics

  1. Nancy Shapiro asked question Where did you find this type of orchid pot? in category General Discussion
  2. Charles H Wood asked question Orchids wanted St.Croix usvi in category General Discussion
  3. William Gorski asked question Is this a species or Primary Hybrid? in category General Discussion
  4. Therese Stecher asked question Banrot 40WP in category General Discussion
  5. Chen Jimmy asked question How to determine the species composition´╝č in category General Discussion

New Comments

  1. Carol Holdren commented on topic "What is the culture for Cattliante Chongkolnee" by Mike Minney
  2. Dianne Mayne commented on topic "Banrot 40WP" by Therese Stecher
  3. Linda Thorne commented on member plant Paphiopedilum Munchkin Mopsi Aru by Linda Thorne
  4. Carol Holdren commented on topic "Orchids wanted St.Croix usvi" by Charles H Wood
  5. William Gorski commented on topic "Is this a species or Primary Hybrid?" by William Gorski
  6. Henry Shaw commented on member plant Coel. Jannine Banks 'Snow White' by Henry Shaw
  7. Carol Holdren commented on topic "Trichocentrum luridum" by Danny Lyon
  8. Carol Holdren commented on topic "How to determine the species composition´╝č" by Chen Jimmy
  9. Lois Lane commented on member plant Ctna. Why Not by Alex Maximiano
  10. Carol Holdren commented on topic "SSPECIES OF ORCHID" by JENNIFER CHARMAN
  11. Carol Holdren commented on topic "Why can't I post on this site? " by Lois Lane
  12. Carol Holdren commented on topic "Historic Cattleya" by Karen Johansen
  13. Carol Holdren commented on topic "Encyclia aspera" by William Woodcock
  14. Jim McGuinn commented on topic "Designing a greenhouse for orchid growing" by Ron Hellendall
  15. Mark Bennett commented on member plant Sarcochilus Newbold Alta 'SBC092' by Mark Bennett
  16. Mark Bennett commented on member plant Sarcochilus Newbold High Noon 'SB140' by Mark Bennett
  17. Carol Holdren commented on orchid Epi. Moonlight Firefies
  18. Jeanne Uzar Hudson commented on topic "Paph Support" by Nicholas Levendosky
  19. Rosemary Chenery commented on topic "Lost tag - can anyone provide a name" by Rosemary Chenery
  20. Taylor Savage commented on topic "Myrmecatavola Frances Fox" by Elizabeth Wagner