This genus brings together about six species of epiphytic orchids, originating in tropical Asia; these are plants that grow large over the years. The short stem bears some large elongated leaves, arched, dark green, quite thick and fleshy; the root system is conspicuous and in general the roots completely fill the container of cultivation, expanding also outside; in spring or summer from the clump of leaves develops a long, hanging floral stem, which bears an inflorescence consisting of 30-40 small fleshy flowers, sometimes delicately scented, white or pinkish, with pink, red, blue or purple, with lip in the same color as the spots. Very vigorous plants, which are usually grown in hanging baskets, to better enjoy the long inflorescences; in general, each plant can produce 3-4 inflorescences during the same season.
The Rynchostylis are grown in the apartment, since they fear the cold; the minimum temperature throughout the year should not be less than 15-18 ° C; keep the pots in a very bright place, but away from direct sunlight, especially during the hottest hours of the day. Direct exposure to the sun's rays could damage the plant's petals and leaves irreparably.
From March to October, water the plants frequently, keeping the substratum slightly damp, but not soaked in water; to avoid water stagnation, allow a good air exchange, to make sure that the water of the waterings evaporates freely; during the cold months thin out the waterings, supplying water at least once a week. Every 2-3 days spray the leaves with distilled water.
The soil is one of the most important aspects to consider when cultivating an orchid or any other plant variety. This is because the soil is the main source of sustenance for all plant species and it is from the soil, through the roots, that the plant acquires the nutrients it needs. To cultivate Rynchostylis, a normal soil for orchids is used, consisting of sphagnum peat, bark, and broken vegetable fibers. These plants do not like the repottings, it is therefore preferable to change the container and the substrate only when it is actually necessary, since the plants have reached large sizes; In any case we avoid ruining the roots during this delicate operation. Starting from the spring season, it will be possible to fertilize our plants with liquid fertilizer to be diluted in the irrigation water. Slightly reduce the dose compared to what is prescribed on the packaging.
The Rynchostylis propagate by division of the roots of roots, in late spring.
Rynchostylis: Pests and diseases
Regarding pests and diseases that could cause damage to the plant, pay attention to cochineal and aphids. These are tiny insects that, by feeding on the sap contained in the leaves of the plant, weaken it, making it difficult to develop. There are specific products on the market to combat the problem.