Image of Coelogyne merrillii growth habit Blank Image  

Check this excellent link for an image of the flower.

This Coelogyne from the Philippines was collected by Dr Elmer Merrrill from near sea level to about 2000 metres. Officially described by Professor Oakes Ames back in 1911, The air in its habitat would be very warm and moist. This orchid usually grows on the ground and on boulders in pine forests.

It produces 2 to 4 simultaneously opening flowers, about 5 cm across, on an erect spike. Its small straw-coloured flowers with a white lip do not open nicely and are a bit droopy.

My plant, pictured above, is growing but should have flowered a couple of years ago. It is taking up a lot of space and not paying its keep! I seem unable to give it the amount of humidity and heat that it needs to flower but I will be patient! A friend of mine has managed to flower it only a kilometres away so my next strategy will be to move the plant to a different position in the glasshouse.

Negatives: It seems reluctant to flower easily unless in a very tropical environment.

Rating: ♦♦ Even if it flowered readily, there would be more attractive Coelogynes waiting in the queue for your precious space. Some of the points above could help explain why it hasn't taken the orchid world by storm. However, an orchid collector is not concerned with popularity!

Sometimes sold as:

Varieties: None known

Hybrids: None registered

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