Growing Instructions - Laelia anceps


Laelia anceps, a native of Mexico but also occurring more rarely in Guatemala and Honduras, is one of the most common, yet one of the most satisfying orchids.  It's ease of care makes it an ideal plant for the beginner as well as the connoisseur.
Laelia anceps is one of the hardiest for cold tolerance of any of the Cattleya alliance, tolerating reported lows of 22F without any damage, and high temperatures over 100F rarely trouble it.  it's blooming season is customarily November through January.
It is grown in pots or mounted, and in subtropical areas is noted for being one of the best to naturalize on trees around the garden, where regular watering is usually adequate.  many trees (except pines) are well suited for L. anceps.   oaks are among the best of trees, and jacardia, palms, citrus, fiejoa, dracinias, and white birch are quite good.  Plants should be tied or stapled (romex type) to trunks and branches.

Light
This laelia likes medium to high light, about 2000-3500 foot-candles.  Very low light is not adequate for successful blooming.

Temperature
Laelia anceps is one of the more temperature tolerant orchids in cultivation today, making it a natural for outdoor growing in southern California and comparable climates.  It has been known to survive winter nights of down to 22F undaunted, and has no problem with heat up to 100F provided it gets water.

Water
Water frequently (weekly to daily, depending on conditions) throughout the growing season, which is mostly April through November.  Water may be reduced in the winter dormant time, but it is not necessary.  Washing off the flower buds by rain or hose is often needed to keep buds from sticking together.

Fertilizer
Regular feeding with a balanced fertilizer will enhance growth, particularly during the growing season of April to November.

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