Polystachya bella Summerh. 1960 "Kyong Hee" HCC/AOS SECTION Affines Kranzlin Photo courtesy of Eric Hunt, plant grown by Anna Chai

Flower Closeup Photo by Art Vogel

Common Name The Beautiful Polystachya

Flower Size 1" [2.5cm]

A medium sized, epiphytic, cool growing plant that is endemic to the rainforests of Southwestern Kenya and Uganda at elevations of 1800 to 1950 meters that has oval, compressed 3" to 4" pseudobulbs tightly spaced on a branching rhizome. The 1 to 4 , 4" leaves are coriaceous, but flexible, suberect, and narrowly elliptic. The psuedobulb gives rise to an apical, 4" to 10" [10 to 25 cm]long, densly many flowered inflorescence that is sometimes branched, has many longlasting fragrant [of primrose] flowers that open in succession. Mounted or in a pot these plants need ample water while in growth and a lessening after the bulbs mature. This species has an ascending growth habit and can be maintained in a pot by placing some cork in the back of the pot so the plant can attach and grow up the cork.

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Orchids of East Africa Piers 1968 photo fide; AOS Bulletin Vol 48 No 11 1979 drawing; AOS Bulletin Vol 52 No 11 1983 photo; Flora of Tropical East Africa Orchidaceae Part 2 Cribb 1984; Die Orchideen lieferung 23 Schlechter/Brieger 1990 photo good; Orchids of Kenya Stewart 1996 photo fide; African Orchids in the Wild and Cultivation La Croix 1997 drawwing/photo fide; Orchid Digest Vol 71 No 3 2007; Mille et Une Mini Orchideees Roguenant 2009 photo fide;

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