Kew Preparations for the Orchid Displays

Kew have shared a photo of their preparations for the Orchid Show which launches on February 9th in the Princess of Wales Conservatory.

Brassia 'Big Spider'

Brassia Painter ''Big Spider"
Brassia have a very specific method for pollination, it uses entomophily which is pollination by insects and in this case specifically by female spider-hunter wasps of the genera Pepsis and Campsomeris. Mistaken by the mimicry of Brassia, the wasp stings the lip, while trying to grasp its prey without any success. By these movements the wasp comes into contact with the pollinarium, that then sticks to its head. By flying to another Brassia flower, this flower gets pollinated.

Restrepia purpurea

Restrepia purpurea is an epiphytic orchid in the genus Restrepia coming from the cloud forests of Southern Colombia at altitudes of 5,400 feet it prefers moderate light to partial shade. It can be grown in cool to warm conditions. Restrepia purpurea should be grown in fine bark with perlite or sphagnum moss and kept moist. They only need small amounts of fertilizer.

The genus Restrepia is closely related to Pleurothallis, although the inflorescences carry only one flower, the lateral sepals have grown together and the central sepal has a swollen tip. If well cared for they can flower multiple times in one year.

Ochids At Kew Gardens

Kew are launching their Orchid Displays again. Enjoy a vibrant burst of colour this February as Kew Gardens brings London a dazzling orchid display; guaranteed to brighten up the winter season. the Princess of Wales Conservatory is transformed into a sea of glorious flowers. It’s a celebration of the colour, drama and beauty associated with this extraordinary and diverse group of plants. Vibrant orchids will dominate the lush, wet tropical zone of the Princess of Wales Conservatory. Stunning displays will sweep through the glasshouse, transforming it into an intense blanket of colour.

For more information and Tickets see the Kew website.

How to Repot Orchids using Bark

Its quite easy to repot your orchids providing you have the correct equipment, orchid grade bark chippings come in differing sizes, if the plant roots are thick choose a larger one, if they are small and thin then choose small chippings. They make a good general compost.