If long Latin orchid names aren’t your thing, you’ll be happy to know that Odontoglossums are nicknamed Odonts (which rhymes with “no fonts.”) The Odont family includes over 100 species and countless human-made hybrids. Many varieties have long-lasting flowers. I’ve had this first one for years, and its brilliants pinks and yellows always take my breath away.

Odont hybrid flowerOdontoglossum flowersOdontoglossum flower lip close up

Native to high elevations in the Andes and the mountaintops of Central America, Odonts topple the myth that orchids only grow in warm greenhouses. These are cool growers, and mine are happy outdoors all year on the California coast, unless it stays above 80°F (27°C) for too long. Both the pink hybrid pictured above and the yellow one below survived our recent hailstorm completely intact, with barely a scratch on their leaves or flowers.

Odontoglossum hybrid flowerOdontoglossum flower close upOdontoglossum flower

Odonts require frequent waterings and bright light, and enjoy direct morning sun. They always need high humidity and good air movement, even during winter dormancy. Many hybrid crosses have also been made with members of the large Oncidium family. These hybrids, including Colmanara, Odontocidium, and Maclellanara, are better choices if you don’t have consistent cool temps. They’re all great proof that you don’t need to live in the tropics to grow orchids.

Odontioda flowersOdontoglossum speciesOdontioda flower


Explore posts in the same categories: Cool Growers, Growing, Photos, Watering

Subscribe to the About Orchids Blog:
AddThis Feed Button

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

5 Comments on “Odonts”

  1. YG Charles Says:

    nice post. thanks.

  2. 20CM Says:

    Very interesting topic and useful post. It really help me. Thanks.

  3. Dean44f Says:

    Thank you for the beautiful photos. Very worthwhile page. Your web site is rather quickly starting to be one of my top picks.

  4. nancy Says:

    I love ur photos. there such great colors.

  5. GS08 Says:

    Great pictures! Thanks!