We seem to be attracted to this species like a magnet, possibly because of the distinct flower shape and pendulous spikes, or maybe because its hybrids grow so well in our conditions. While we have more hybrids of Cymbidium madidum, our Cymbidium collection seems dominated by plants with Cymbidium devonianum as a parent by its habit of producing many, many flower spikes, even on a relatively small (1 gallon) plant.
While the hybrids are very temperature tolerant, and live outdoors, our actual Cymbidium devonianum stays year-round in the cool room, in a shady corner with lots of humidity. We grow it in a basket of sphagnum moss, unique amongst our Cymbidium species and hybrids. It does very well — we have no desire to change the culture at this point! Because of the basket culture, as you will see in the final photo, this orchid is creative in its flower spike placement, and sent one spike out of the side of the basket.
Cymbidium devonianum has a wide range, from India, through the Himalayas of Nepal and Bhutan, to Thailand and Vietnam. As a result, there is considerable variability in the flower color of this species.
We grow Cymbidium devonianum with a distinct wet/dry cycle. It is damp from April-October, beginning with the initiation of the first growth. In the summer, we keep it fully moist all of the time, simulating the peak of the monsoon. In late fall, when the growths have matured, we taper the water to dryness for a few months, with occasional misting and moistening the top of the basket. The cool room is always very humid (60%+ humidity), so the fully dry period is acceptable. Winter low temperatures are around 50F (10F) and summer highs are in the mid 80s (29C). Cymbidium devonianum receives low light, comparable to our shady highland New Guinea Dendrobium species (Dendrobium limpidum, Dendrobium lawesii). (You can see the flower of a Dendrobium limpidum in the background of the final image in the series below.)
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