The small genus Rhynchostylis is directly related to the orchid family. It unites only 6 plant species. Under natural conditions they can be found in Indonesia, Southeast Asia as well as in the Philippines.
This plant has a monopodial growth, which means that all the time it grows only one upright stem. As it grows, the leaves underneath die off and fall off, but strong aerial roots grow from the remaining leaf axils, which have a rather thick layer of porous velamen on their surface.
The successive, dark green, sheathing leaves on the shoot sit rather densely. The thick, hard, almost succulent leaves have a strap-shaped shape, with a tip that is not very even, as if chopped off. From the leaf axils below grow flower stalks that bear multi-flowered inflorescences, which are bunches of fairly large size. The small, fragrant flowers are rounded and no more than 2 centimeters in diameter. The 3 sepals are very similar to the petals and are broadly oval in shape.
The sepals are arranged relative to each other at an angle of 120 degrees. The 2 true petals (petals) lie opposite each other, and are not as long and wide as the sepals, although they have the same coloration. The lip (3rd true petal), which is of contrasting coloration, is the same size as the petals, but it is bent perpendicular to the calyx. The lip is shovel-shaped, with a split or crenulated margin. This genus was named rhynchostylis because of its beak-shaped column (reproductive organ).
Thus, from the Greek rhynchos is translated as "beak".
Home care for Rhynchostylis orchid
This plant is not undemanding in its care. You need a certain temperature, humidity and light all the time for it to grow and develop properly.
This orchid is photophilous and it is recommended to put it in a sunny spot. However, it should be shaded from the direct afternoon sun to prevent burns on the surface of the leaves.
If the light is too bright, the leaves change their color to reddish, after the flower is removed to the shade, they become green again. If there is little light, the leaves turn a dark green color.
It is not only bright light that will be needed for the flower stalks to form. The length of the daylight hours also plays an important role. So, all year round it should be from 10 to 12 hours.
Because of this, Rhynchostylis needs backlighting with phytolamps in autumn and winter.
This plant needs a moderately warm temperature regime. At the same time, it needs daily temperature variations. During the day it should be 22 to 28 degrees, and at night 17 to 20 degrees. Note that the differences in daily temperatures should have a difference of about 5 degrees.
This orchid does not need a substrate. It grows on a block with open roots. Typically, the block is made from a large piece of pine bark, on which the roots and stem base are fixed. Lattice baskets made of plastic or wood can also be used. The roots should pass freely through the holes in the walls.
How to water
Pouring is done by immersing the root system in a basin filled with soft and always warm (30 to 40 degrees) water. After the leaf axils have been thoroughly dried (remove any liquid from them if necessary), the plant should be placed in its usual place. This should be done to prevent rotting at the base of the leaves.
Moisture of the air is necessary. Thus, the humidity in the room should be at least 60-65 percent.
This requires systematic, frequent sprinkling and the use of a household steam generator, with the air being directed towards the roots.
Fertilize the plant from March to November. Fertilise once every 2 or 3 weeks and use a special fertiliser for orchids (take ½ of the recommended dosage on the package). Dilute the fertilizer in water intended for moistening or watering the plant.
Being outdoors, this orchid will be provided with an optimum temperature regime with the necessary temperature variations during the day, but a place with a very high humidity should be chosen.
The plant can blossom in any of the months, but it does not need a dormancy period.
This flower cannot be propagated if grown indoors. By a fluke, a juvenile may form on the shoot. It can only be gently detached from the mother plant when it has fully developed roots.
Rhinchostilis can be cultivated commercially either meristemically (cloning) or from seed.
Pests and diseases
Resistant to pests. Often the flower can become rotten due to overwatering or its roots can shrivel up due to low humidity.
It can also fail to bloom. This is due to many different causes regarding improper care. This is usually due to low humidity and poor light.
Orchidia Rhynchostylis (Rhynchostylis ).Care.
There are only 2 species popular among flower growers who breed orchids in Russia.
Rynchostylis gigantea (Rhynchostylis gigantea)
This epiphyte is quite large. The fleshy leaves are 30 to 40 centimeters long and 5 to 6 centimeters wide.
The plant blooms in autumn and winter for 10 to 14 days. Dense inflorescences are attached to the flower stalk which resemble a cylinder and do not exceed 40 centimeters in length. These inflorescences consist of 20-60 small (about 2.5 centimeters in diameter) flowers, which have a small spur at the back. The sepals and petals are narrowed at the base, resulting in a rather large gap between them.
The three-lobed lip has strongly raised lateral lobes.
There are 2 different forms of this type of orchid. One has snow-white flowers and the other has them white, but the petals and sepals have purple-pink spots and the lip is painted the same color shade as the spots.
Rynchostylis blunted (Rhynchostylis retusa)
This epiphyte is of medium size. The leaves of this species are smaller than those of the one described above, but the peduncle is somewhat longer (about 60 centimeters), and the inflorescences have up to 100 small (not more than 2 centimeters in diameter) flowers.
The 2 large sepals underneath are wide-oval, almost circular in shape. The 3rd sepal, on top, is not as wide and large. The narrow petals are superimposed on the tepals, with them covering them, resulting in a continuous calyx. The light pink florets have small dots of dark pink. The lip is also colored dark pink.
It blooms in late winter early spring.