A Max. schunkeana was placed on the species bench and although not usually seen at meetings is one of interest because of its unusual colour.
It is really dark purple-red but to the eye it looks black which is highly unusual in the very colourful world of orchid flowers.
Housing. As it originates from Brazil in South America it prefers warm to cool conditions, higher humidity and likes to be kept moist but not wet.
Flowers are approximately one centimeter wide and appear from the base of the pseudo bulbs in spring to summer.
Fertilizer. A general all purpose fertilizer is satisfactory every couple of weeks throughout the year.
Potting. Can be grown successfully in sphagnum moss or a finer bark mix but not over potted bearing in mind they tend to spread out in growth.
General Comments. This fascinating orchid is not difficult to cultivate and get to flower. If you can procure one from a nursery you will have something uniquently different in your collection.
PLANT: Bulb. Wilmar Galaxy Star
GROWER: C. and H. Baker
HOUSING: Grows well in a shade house with seventy percent shade cloth cover. Enjoys good ventilation and air movement.
FEEDING: Could be described as a heavy feeder, fertilize weekly with alternate applications of higher nitrogen and potassium fertilizer in summer and monthly in winter.
POTTING: Tends to have a spreading growth and easily outgrows normal pots. Does better if potted in shallow saucer shape pots where it will multiply as it spreads. Can grow into an attractive specimen with many flowers.
COMMENTS: This would be an ideal plant for new growers to have in their collection as it is hardy, grows well in tropical and subtropical climates.