Looking more like a hyacinth than an orchid, Arpophyllum giganteum has dense clusters of pretty purple blooms. This orchid can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, but needs cool nights inĀ  winter in order to bloom. Here in San Francisco, I grow it outdoors all year with bright light and regular water. Its native habitat stretches from Mexico to Venezuela.

Arpophyllum flowersArpophyllum flowersArpophyllum flowers

Close-up photos show that the mini flowers do resemble other orchids, just upside down. The lip of the flower is on top, and a hint of yellow color shows the location of the pollen. Dozens of 3/8 inch (1 cm) flowers spiral around a spike that can reach 16 inches (40 cm) in length. Dave photographed a particularly nice specimen a few years ago at the San Francisco Orchid Show, shown in the final picture.

Arpophyllum flowersArpophyllum flowers close-upArpophyllum orchid

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3 Comments on “Arpophyllum”

  1. Hanley Says:

    I have never seen this orchid before, and it really does look like hyacinth bulb. The flower spike on that last picture look like it grows and grows and never stops.

  2. DWRichard Says:

    Great flowr pics!

  3. JSMichael Says:

    It looks like they are orchid flowers on a stick