Dendrobium 

(den-dro' bee-um)

Common name: Dendrobium

Family: Orchidaceae, Orchid

Height x width: 2-6' x 6-18"

Growth rate: moderate

Foliage: linear, lanceolate or ovate leaves 3-9" long, either at ends of stems or alternate 2-ranked; from elongated, stem-like pseudobulb "canes"; monopodial growth

Flowers: single directly from pseudobulb, or many-flowered 1-2' racemes or panicles from nodes along stems; flowers 1-3" across, 3 outer sepals, 3 inner petals with 2 often wider than sepals and one forming a tube with wide flared opening; many colors, often brightly marked; flowers last 1-2 months

Light: bright to moderate

Temperature: cool to warm

Watering: well-watered, less when not in growth

Fertility: low

Humidity: humid

Soil: epiphytic or orchid slab

Pests and Problems: bacterial and fungal rots, viruses, leaf spots, botrytis gray mold, spider mites, aphids, whiteflies, mealybugs

Growth habit, uses: flowering indoors

Other interest: native from rainforests to montaine forests in India, Australia, Southeast Asia, South Pacific islands; from the Greek dendron meaning tree, and bios meaning life, refering to the epiphytic habit on trees of most species

Other culture: keep potbound for best flowering; flower stems may need support; they resent disturbance as in repotting; often easy to grow but difficult to flower indoors

Propagation: divide offsets when roots are actively growing and plants overrun container; stem cuttings laid on damp moss to root of some species

Species:

Of the about 900 species, the following are often recommended or found. All have racemes, usually pendent, unless noted. Habit can be evergreen (E), semi-evergreen (SE), or deciduous (D).
 
Species height foliage, length, habit flowers, width
amethystoglossum 2-3' oval-obong, 4", SE white racemes, amethyst lips
aphyllum 3' linear-lance, 5", D pink, yellow lips, in pairs
bigibbum 3' oblong-lance, 5", SE white/purple/pink
chrysanthum 3-6' lance, 4-8", E golden, fringed orange lips
densiflorum 1' narrow elliptic, 6", E golden, darker/downy lips, dense 
fimbriatum 2-4' oblong-lance, 3-6", E orange-golden, fringed lips
infundibulum 2' ovate-oblong, 3", SE white, yellow throat markings
kingianum 6" narrow ovate, 4", E white/pink/purple/red, fragrant
lindleyi 4" single oval, 2-3", E yellow
loddigesii 6" oblong, fleshy, 3", D rose, orange on fringed lip, single
longicornu 1' linear-lance, 3", SE white, red/yellow on fringed lip
moschatum 3-6' lance, 6", E pale yellow, 2-marked cupped lip
nobile 18" ovate-lance, 3-5", SE rose, maroon marked lip
ochreatum 6" lance, 4-5", D, hanging golden, maroon marked lip, in pairs
speciosum 18" ovate-oblong, 10", E white, purple marked, fragrant
wardianum 1' lance,3-5", D, hanging white, purple tips, marked lips, pairs
       


©Authored by Dr. Leonard Perry, Professor, University of Vermont as part of PSS121, Indoor Plants.

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