Archive for March, 2010

Mmmm … Coconut

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

Even if you don’t see the flowers of this Maxillaria species, you’re definitely going to smell them. Maxillaria tenuifolia earns the nickname “Coconut Orchid” from its delicious scent. It’s native to tropical rainforests from Mexico south to Costa Rica. Orchid beginners often grow easier hybrids instead of fussier species, but this species is easy to […]

Early Spring Garden

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

As temperatures have warmed, and heavy winter rains have given way to light spring showers, our garden is coming alive. First, this bloom on an Abutilon, or Flowering Maple, looks like a brilliant red bell announcing the season. Next, this Iris is a California native we bought years ago at a Strybing Arboretum plant sale. […]

Spring Equinox

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

I’ll start today’s celebration of spring with a few nice photos. The first is a sweetly scented Iwanagara, a Cattleya hybrid. Next is a Paph species native to China, and then a Jasmine that’s bursting into bloom in our back garden. Here in San Francisco, we set a record high of 80F (27C) yesterday, and […]


Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

No matter how many vowels in its name, Oeoniella has plenty of charms. It’s an orchid species that’s easy to grow, with dainty flowers that produce a strong, sweet scent. Pronounced “oh-ee-NEE-ella,” rhymes with “go see me, Ella,” its name comes from Greek words describing the flower’s resemblance to an eagle’s wings. Maybe the pointed […]

Spring Forward

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

Northern gardeners who are enduring a long and snowy winter may take some solace that spring is arriving in San Francisco. The old Japanese Maple in the back garden is leafing out, and the leaves of my Sobralia have turned light green, telling me that the sun is strengthening. We had to endure some chilly […]

The Law of the Jungle

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

After enjoying the polished perfection of an orchid show, it’s an interesting contrast to see some wild orchids. In the wild, orchids endure damage from wind, rain, animals, and insects. Other plants grow over and around them. Jungle debris accumulates and rots away. When you’re surviving in the wild, perfection is a luxury. These eaten […]

More from Pacific Orchid Expo 2010

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

There were so many remarkable orchids at this year’s Pacific Orchid Expo that it would be impossible to fit them into just one post. For example, these first two photos show stunning Phal hybrids. The third photo shows a smaller Phal species that’s native to the Philippines. It may be less showy, but it’s important […]

March Orchid Shows

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

On cue for spring, orchid shows all over the world invite you to see amazing orchids, and meet local growers and vendors. This month, major shows are taking place in Taiwan, London, Santa Barbara, San Diego, Montreal, Chicago, Sao Paulo, and Sydney. March 5 – 7 Victoria Orchid Society Show, Univ. of Victoria, Student Union […]