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Cattleya Orchid: how it looks and how to properly care

Orchid - one of the most exotic flowering domestic plants. However, many gardeners claim that it is the Cattleya orchid that is the most beautiful and easy to maintain.

Family: Orchidaceae (Orchids).

Homeland: Central and South America, the Caribbean.

Reproduction: when transplanting pseudo-chamber.

The size: medium and large.

Description of plants of the genus Cattleya

According to various sources, the following brief description of the Cattleya Orchid is given.

False bulbs (pseudobulbs) with 2 - 3 interstices holding 1 - 2 leaf. Young shoots appear at the base of last year's shoots, which leads to the growth of culture in width.

Inflorescence: the apical, with 1 flower, or racemes, leaves the bosom, covered with a “cover” of the covering leaves.

Orchid family includes several genera, incl. and Cattleya Orchid, which got its name in honor of the Englishman W. Cattley. In the wild, these are plants that grow independently or permanently attached to the trunks of trees, as well as adapted to life on rocks and stones.

At the same time, you can meet representatives of Orchids of this kind in such countries as Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay. Culture can grow both at a height equal to sea level (purple cattleya is found in the Amazon river basin) and on three-meter cliffs (two-colored cattleya grows in the Brazilian mountains).

The study of what the Cattleya orchid looks like can be started from the stem. It is in the plant sympodial, shortened succulent, having the appearance of a pseudobulb in the shape of a cylinder, spindle or ball. It has several growth points, but as it develops, only the single main process remains, the rest die. In a false bulb, 1 or 2 leaf is formed, having a narrowed oblong shape. Leaves compacted, fleshy or leathery, do not bend with growth.

Depending on how many leaves a plant has, they produce cattleyas:

  • Single leaves.
  • Two-leaved.

The first orchids are with fleshy, spindle-shaped, flattened pseudobulbs, from which the 1 leaf has been released. The second ones are with long cylinder-shaped false bulbs, of which 2 or more leaves grow.

All pseudobulbs are connected by the root system. The plant of the genus Cattleya has a creeping air rhizome adapted to life in the mountains or in the trees. It can be on the surface or go deep into the ground.

Thanks to its numerous roots, the culture receives nourishment and necessary moistening from the air (thanks to the covering with a cycle garden, i.e. hygroscopic tissue) and the earth. The rhizome of the plant is designed so that its old shoots periodically dry out, and new ones grow in their stead.

A culture may bloom from a decade to a month (depending on the species). At the same time there are varieties that bloom in spring and winter.

Orchid flower Cattleya is similar to the color of other members of the Orchid family: there are 3 petals and 3 sepals. It also has a characteristic “lip” - the middle lobe, which takes the form of a tube or a funnel, has a shade brighter and a beautiful edge with a fringe. In the wild, such a lip performs the function of a certain seat for insects and hummingbirds birds, which act as pollinators of a flower.

The diameter of the corolla varies in different varieties from a couple of millimeters to a quarter of a meter, and the colors are pinkish, whitish, lilac and crimson. Usually on a 1 plant there is a minimum of 4 false bulbs, on which flowers bloom sequentially. At the same time, the flower lives from 20 days to a month.

Take a look at the photo of what beautiful Cattleya flowers are depicted on them:

A distinctive feature of the flower Cattleya is also a thick smell, in some cases resembling the scent of lily of the valley or lily. Such cut flowers do not wither for a long time, even if there is no access to water. Due to this property in the XIX and XX centuries, ladies decorated themselves with them on social events.

Species, varieties and hybrids of room orchid Cattleya: photos, names and descriptions of plants

Most species of wild orchid Cattleya are common on the eastern slopes of the Central Cordillera, as well as in the valley of the Cauca River, Magdalena, Los Llanes de Saint-Juan. To date, more than 65 plant species are known to be found in Mexico, Central and South America, and also in the Antilles.

Representatives of the Cattleya Orchid are:

  • Cattleya bowringiana.
  • Cattleya bicolor.
  • Cattleya mossiae.
  • Cattleya trianae.
  • Cattleya forbesii.
  • Cattleya labiata and many other species.

Take a look, below are photos with a description of these types of cattleya:

Cattleya bowringiana - its false bulb can be up to 76; see Narrow oblong-ellipsoid leaves, usually 2 or 3. The flowers themselves have a diameter of 5 - 7 cm, while their color is usually pinkish-lavender, purple. The lip of the orchid is purple with a yellowish spot. It pleases with its color in the autumn-winter period.

Cattleya bicolor - one of the first types of Cattleya orchid, included in the classification with 1836 g. It can reach a height of more than half a meter, and its flower be a radius of about 5. The plant blooms in autumn and winter, the color may be brownish-green, orange-brownish, with a purple lip having more lightened edges.

Cattleya mossiae - blooms in spring, capturing Easter holidays. From here came the second name of the flower - Easter Cattleya. It grows in Venezuela, the size of the flower is about 15 - 18, see. Its color can vary from pale pink to lilac (sometimes white). The color of the lips is yellowish with a purple well-marked vein, the edge of it is with fringe.

Cattleya trianaei - grows up to half a meter, and its flower can have a diameter from 15 to 20, see. Its color is delicate pink with a bright crimson triple lip with a whitish border. In the middle of the lip has a golden or yellowish tint. The plant blooms in the winter-spring period.

Cattleya forbesii refers to the mini-orchids. Its height does not exceed 10 - 20. At the same time, olive-greenish, yellow-greenish or yellow-brown flowers with a whitish lip with a pinkish tinge usually have a size of about 10 cm and delight in bloom in the summer-autumn period. This view was discovered in 1860.

Cattleya labiata - tree culture, with large, spindle-shaped, univalent false bulbs. Their height is no more than 25 cm, a flower with a radius of about 7,5 cm. The color of the petals is pinkish or lilac, the lip of the same color, but with a large patch of crimson hue in front, a pale yellow spot with scarlet veins in the throat and a pale pink edge with a fringe.

The most well-known intergeneric forms derived by the selection method are brasscattley, leliokattleya, softroleokattleya.

All of them are usually united under one name - Cattleya hybrida.

In most cases, breeders crossed Cattleya labiata and its forms and varieties together, resulting in very beautiful varieties of the Cattleya plant.

For beginners, gardeners are especially good with orchids in room culture: Cattleya (Cattleya) and Lelya (Laelia) hybrids, so-called Laeliocattleya (Laeliocattleya). The fact is that all hybrid varieties are not very demanding to care, but their appearance remains as attractive as that of natural orchids.

Below are photos with a short description and names of several Cattleya hybrids:

Cattleya venosa - A hybrid that appeared as a result of the combination of Cattleya forbesii and Cattleya harrisoniana, which was originally discovered in Brazil. Great for home growing, because does not take a lot of space, but it gives a lot of colors. The shape and color of the sepals is similar to Cattleya forbesii, while in addition to the greenish-brown shades, there is also a pinkish-brownish.

Cattleya earl imperials - a fairly common plant, obtained by combining Cattleya trianaei, Cattleya qaskelliana and Cattleya mossiae. Distinguishes it from other whitish flower with curly edges on the petals and lip. She's just gorgeous.

Cattleya will be interesting for fans of indoor flowering plants. Margaret degenhardt "Saturdays"giving color twice in a year. Thus, its bright crimson sepals can be admired more often.

Perfect for growing in an apartment Cattleya luteous forbwhich is small enough and can adapt to home life. Its olive flowers with a golden lip, decorated with a white fringe border, delight their owners twice a year.

After crossing natural species, more than 100 cattleya varieties, selectively presented in the photo below, appeared:

Agree, this is the most beautiful flowering plants. They amaze with the variety, possess the intoxicating aroma and at the same time delight their hostesses for a very long time.

Of course, this is only a very small proportion of all possible hybrids-orchid varieties, but even by them it can be seen how versatile and beautiful this flower is. Therefore, it is important to learn how to care for him.

Why doesn't Cattleya bloom?

Sometimes it happens that Cattleya grows at home, but does not bloom at the same time. Why does this happen?

The fact is that only adult culture flourishes. If an already blooming orchid was bought with a fully integrated shrub with live roots, and it also has at least 4 false bulbs (this is an important condition for flowering), then we can expect that the new pet will please the eye with its flower this year. But even with such favorable conditions, it is necessary to adhere to certain principles of care for Cattleya orchid at home:

  • Proper culture lighting is required.
  • Methodical watering and fertilizing plants.
  • Maintain optimum temperature.
  • Proper orchid care during the resting period.

In more detail, these generalized rules to achieve its flowering will be discussed below.

How to grow Cattleya orchid at home to achieve flowering

Location: very bright, but not sunny.

Before you start growing your favorite cattley house, you need to know in which place in the house she will feel most comfortable. The orchid is very fond of light, because in nature it grows on rocky, well-lit surfaces or under the shadow of open tropical trees.

Therefore, in order to achieve the blooming of Cattleya orchids growing at home, it is necessary to choose a well-lit place for it. They can be quite bright sill in the south-west or east. You can also choose the southern side of housing, but it is necessary to cover it from direct sunlight.

It is better to refuse planting crops from the north or north-east side, where there is not enough light. It is possible to find out whether the orchid is sufficiently illuminated by the color of its leaves: the pale yellowish ones speak of an excess of light, and the lack of it will be told by a dark green color. Ideally, the leaf color should be bright green.

At home, preparing for the process of flowering orchid cattleya happens something like this. In summer, the plant is saturated with light, maximally developing its pseudobulbs, so that later buds appear on them. It is important to know that if there is not enough light for culture during this period, then the flower will develop in a bud cover, and if the lighting completely disappears, then the plant itself may die, it will be necessary to urgently reanimate it.

Therefore, it is very important that even in the winter period the culture should be in the most lighted place or create artificial light for it. It is best to have a diffused, half-transparent light on it at any time of the year.

How to make Cattleus bloom at home: watering and feeding

Studying how to make a house to blossom cattleya, you need to pay attention to such a procedure as watering the plants. Watering orchids has this specificity:

  • Summer should be watered moderately, watering twice or thrice a week.
  • In winter, keep almost dry.

Orchid loves a warm shower for her in the summer months (approximately 1 times in 4 weeks). It is very important to remember that bushes are dying from an overabundance of moisture. Therefore, it is very necessary to allow the substrate to dry out before the next moistening of the earth.

It is necessary to moisturize young sprouts, therefore, watering homemade cattley should be done on the ground, while not touching the culture itself, to prevent its rotting. Best of all, the daily irrigation regime is as close as possible to the natural growing conditions of the orchid. Because dew usually falls early in the morning and after sunset, the sprinkling of water on the leaves should be carried out, respectively, in the morning and in the evening.

Fertilizers are needed orchid directly during cultivation. This is important when studying the question of how to make a Cattleya orchid bloom at home.

Top dressing during the growth of false bulbs should be as follows: Every 4 week add fertilizer for orchids to the water for irrigation. When the growth and development of the pseudobulb stops, the nutrients are stopped. They are injected again when the growth of the spike begins. From May to October need to feed more often. When flowers appear, dressing is canceled. The composition of the nutrients must necessarily include phosphorus and potassium in the minimum concentration.

How and what to water cattleyu

Studying how best to water cattleya, it is worth remembering that the rains in its native lands take place in the afternoon, i.e. and moisten the land of the houseplant better afternoon. Very good if used in this rainwater or distilled water. According to experts, one of the best methods to irrigate a culture is to dip it in a basin with warm water.

At the same time, on cool and cloudy days, as well as in the dormant period after flowering, it is better not to water the earth, but only slightly spray it with a spray bottle. When moisture gets on the leaves of the crop, especially during the cold period, they should be immediately wiped dry to prevent dark spots on the plant. Water on the false bulbs leads to rotting of the roots, the orchid dies. During the rest period, irrigation is required to reduce and resume watering when the spike begins to grow.

Temperature regime for growing Cattleya

An important parameter when growing a cattleya plant at home is temperature compliance. Preferably, the temperature should be:

  • In the summer you need a lot of air and heat up to 25 ° C.
  • In winter, during the daytime, maintain around 18 ° С, at night - around 14 ° С.

Important! At night, the temperature is reduced by several degrees.

For this representative of the Orchid family, it is optimal for the difference between the temperature during the day and night to be 5 - 7 ° С, therefore, in the summer months, the crop can be grown on the balcony. It must be remembered that the orchid does not tolerate drafts, although airing the room is an integral part of caring for it.

For pseudobulb cattley to mature, it is necessary to lower the air temperature and reduce watering, otherwise only leaves will be formed. Humidity should be in the winter 40 - 60%, and in the summer - up to 70%, for which you need to spray the leaves often from May to October.

Growing Cattleya in coconut and other substrate

Considering how to care for your favorite cattleya, you should pay attention to the soil in which it should grow. Purchase is possible special substrate: "For orchids". The most important requirement for it is to let the culture breathe, i.e. It should be sufficiently loosened. There are 2 variants of a suitable soil for this orchid:

  • In the fiber osmundy (fern plant).
  • In pieces of pine bark of different sizes (from 5 mm to 5 cm).

The substrate of the latter suggests that the pine bark should be soaked for several days, then rinsed with clean water. It is necessary that its pH ranged from 5,5 to 6,2. If the acidity is greater, the plant will no longer absorb iron, its leaves will turn yellow and begin to fall off.

One of the best options is to make the soil for the orchid with his own hands. For this you will need:

  • 30% pine bark thickness 1 - 2 see
  • 20% bark of spruce (size of pieces 0,5 - 1 cm).
  • 20% foam (thickness 1 - 2 cm).
  • 15% claydite.
  • 10% peat.
  • 5% charcoal (fraction 0,4 - 1 cm).

Another ratio is also possible:

  • 30% wood fiber.
  • 25% bark of conifers.
  • 15% foam.
  • 15% sponge (or mineral wool).
  • 15% oak leaf.

A good option for growing cattley on the south side is coconut, which can be made from the following ingredients:

  • 45% bark of coniferous trees, size 1 - 2 see
  • 15% oak leaf.
  • 15% coconut fiber.
  • 15% moss sphagnum.

At the same time, coconut fiber has a stable structure and sufficient air penetration. In such a ground rooting occurs quickly, so it is also shown to plants with damaged root systems. It is necessary to take into account that in the coconut fiber there are almost no nutrients, therefore they need to be added.

Separation and reproduction of Cattleya orchids at home care

Speaking about the care of Cattleya orchid at home, it is impossible not to consider its reproduction. It occurs through the division of false bulbs. Separate fully formed pseudobulbs, which are, in fact, independent plants, only fastened by a single rhizome. The resulting culture should consist of 2 - 3 false bulbs with healthy, undamaged roots. Before cutting the bush into parts, it is necessary to sterilize the knife or pruner with fire or alcohol. This will help protect culture from various infections.

Best of all, the reproduction and separation of the Cattleya orchid takes place before the emergence of new roots. Before disengaging, a part of the bush that was underground should be dipped into the water for 30 minutes to facilitate the accurate disentangling of the rhizome.

It is more convenient to carry out this manipulation without pulling the culture out of the water. After the roots have been carefully uncoupled, the root system is dried, the rotting, damaged, and dry roots are removed. Pay attention, when there are rotting parts on the rhizome, the plant is too watered, it is necessary to reduce the frequency of its irrigation in the future. Slices require grouting, which can be done with crushed coal or cinnamon. You should not use alcohol-containing antiseptics for this purpose, so as not to lead to additional drying of healthy tissue culture.

Then divided into 2 parts of the orchid are planted in the ground.

How to grow a new baby cattley

Asking how to grow a new baby Kattley, planting the old, you need to familiarize yourself with the basic rules of this procedure.

At first, the selected substrate before planting plants in it would be good to disinfect, especially when it smells of fungus. This will be an additional barrier to pests and the development of diseases. To this end, the soil can be subjected to heat treatment:

  • Boil for a few minutes.
  • Pour on 10 min. boiling water, and then rinse again with hot water.

SecondlyWhen breeding your favorite Cattleya at home, when choosing a container for planting a crop, you need to build on the size of its root system. Ideally, the roots are placed in an empty pot and the sides are left with about 2, see emptiness. Before planting the pot, rinse well at high temperature with a cleaning agent (or do a dishwasher), which is left applied for half an hour, then rinse with warm water. This will remove the bacteria from the disease.

Thirdly, it is advisable to make a drainage, laying out foam plastic, small stones, etc. at the bottom of the container for growing.

How to plant cattleya and watering after planting

Fourthly, Orchid plant Cattleya should be made in the middle of the pot. Before dropping a plant, it is necessary to inspect it for possible future pseudobulbs and exclude them from digging into the ground (in order to prevent rotting due to interaction with the wet substrate). Ideally sprinkle only the roots of the culture. So that the new sprout is more stable and does not fall down, it can be tied to a stick stuck next to it. After rooting, this rod is removed.

The first watering after it turned out to plant a cattleya can be carried out immediately (if the rhizome was dried the whole night after separation) or after 2 - 4 of the day (when the roots dried up only 2 h). In the latter case, you must also take into account the temperature and intensity of illumination.

With 25 - 30 ° C, it is possible to water in the summer already on 2 the day after planting, and in winter you should wait for the day 3 - 4. Planting and transplanting the bush are the same, so they can be combined.

When to do a Cattleya orchid transplant at home

In general, a Cattleya orchid transplant is needed infrequently: every 2-3 a year after flowering. The plant does not like this procedure and does not tolerate it well, so it is necessary to subject it to culture only if it is impossible to do otherwise. Even a simple change of the pot will be a pretext for her, and the restoration will take quite a long period. Cases due to which it will simply be necessary to transplant Cattleya orchids at home:

  • Root system decay.
  • Lack of space for the development of rhizomes.
  • Compacted and oxidized substrate.

It is possible to replant an old bush when newly emerged sprouts of future false bulbs reach 2 - 3 cm, or before the appearance of new roots. Usually this time falls in the spring. If this is a newly acquired plant, then a new Cattleya orchid can be transplanted at home, either after the last flower has faded or during the first year of purchase.

Indeed, in most cases, purchased plants grow in the same substrate from the very beginning, and transplant them only from smaller vases to those that are larger.

Choosing the right time for this manipulation is half the success, because in this case, the culture will be able to quickly get used to the new conditions, and its rhizome will more quickly consolidate.

Why do leaves and bulbs wrinkle in Cattleya: pests that cause disease

It so happens that the cattleya leaves become flabby, wrinkled - this may indicate the presence of pests, overheating of the rhizome or frostbite, as well as drying, dying off of the roots. The latter may occur due to an overabundance of moisture and insufficient drying of the root system, or, conversely, insufficient irrigation, the use of excessively concentrated dressings, soil compaction. Cattleya can freeze in winter if the temperature drops below the optimum.

This genus is susceptible to the development of putrefactive fungi and infections due to improper care. To eliminate them, the affected areas are cut and dried, antifungal agents are used in preventive measures. There are also such pests that cause disease in Cattleya orchids:




Spider mites.

Mealy worms


In many cases, soap and modern insecticides help to get rid of such pests.

In case of overheating, not only the leaves, but also the bulbs will shrivel in cattleya. This happens when the temperature in the environment is too high and there is no watering. Then the moisture from the plant comes out through the leaves and false bulbs, they become flabby. To return the culture to life, you need to remove it from the window into the room for a couple of hours, then moisturize and relocate the bush to another place, warning the new overheating.

Cattleya resuscitation: how to grow roots, if the orchid was left without them

Improper care of the plant, ignoring the rules of its cultivation, as well as various diseases and infections lead to the death of its rhizome. If Cattleya was left without roots, she urgently needs resuscitation. During this event, the most favorable conditions are created for the renewal of the orchid root system. You should know that new roots will grow only from new shoots, so it is important to find such shoots. The main stages of how to try to grow roots of cattlee are:

  • Daily soak in water for 2 h.
  • After the roots appear, the plant is soaked.
  • When the first 3 root reaches the length of 6 cm, the crop is planted in a small narrow pot with moss, charcoal, pine bark, coconut.

The holding of such manipulations can be delayed for 1 for a month or even a year. The best and fastest reanimation of an orchid is obtained in the warm season or in a greenhouse, at a temperature of 20 - 25 ° С.

Watch a video about what kind of care for Cattleya orchid at home will lead to long-term flowering of the plant:

This story will be able to more clearly explain the basic principles of successful cultivation of culture. And let the flowers of orchids delight the eye for a long time!

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