The botanical species of the Paphiopedilum are found in the jungles of the Far East and Indonesia. They mainly grow in the humus layer of the forest and sometimes on stones. They are rarely found in trees.
Paphiopedilums are also sometimes called Venus shoes (in English ladyslipper or slipper orchid, and in German Frauenschuh). About sixty to eighty species belong to this genus.
The shoe-shaped lip serves as an insect trap; flying insects are lured by fragrances and the promise of nectar in the flower. They can only exit through a narrow opening, passing the pistil and stamens and getting the pollen on their bodies. With the next flower, the pollen then ends up on the pistil
APPEARANCE OF THE PAPHIOPEDILUM
American hybrids are available from October through March. Multiflowers are available all year round. These special orchids are available at the better-stocked florists and garden centers. The American hybrids have a large flower. The multiflowers have small flowers, often two to four flowers per stem. The Paphiopedilum grows in leaf shoots. The flowers emerge from the center of the shoot. American hybrids come from yellow to red, often with a pattern in the back flag (septal). The multiflowers are yellow to brown / red. Paphiopedilum is always propagated by seed, which gives each plant unique properties.
Paphiopedilums are shade orchids. Never put them in full midday sun. Too much sun produces light or burnt leaves. The daytime temperature of the spotted leaf should be between 20 and 24 ° C. In the case of green leaves, the temperature should be between 17 and 22 ° C during the day. Paphiopedilum blooms for six to ten weeks.
The Paphiopedilum likes a light pot mixture. Water once a week, a little more in the summer. Make sure that no water remains at the bottom of the outer pot. Submerging with rainwater for approximately ten minutes is preferred.
The orchids need very little fertilizer. Give orchid food once every two or three weeks, but only use half the amount of food indicated on the bottle. This orchid is easy to grow in the living room. Do not put the Paphiopedilum in full sun. Cold nights (12 to 15 ° C) in the spring promote the formation of flower buds.
Each stem blooms only once and then dies. Cut the old stem as deep as possible. The Paphiopedilum flowers on a new shoot after about nine months. When transplanting, make sure that the base of the Paphiopedilum is under the potting material, otherwise the root growth will stop. If the Paphiopedilum becomes too large, it can easily be divided into pieces of two or three plants. The Paphiopedilum does not like a pot that is too large. Repotting in orchid soil once every three to four years is sufficient.
Because a somewhat lower night temperature stimulates bud formation, most orchids flower in the middle of winter. Paphiopedilum is a slow growing crop, it takes about three years for the Paphiopedilum to be old enough to flower. With sufficient new shoot (leaf) growth, it can then bloom every year. The more shoots the Paphiopedilum makes, the greater the chance that the Paphiopedilum will flower with more flowers.
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