Dendrobium nobile

Source: MaX Fulcher

Dendrobium nobile

Dendrobium nobile is one of the most cultivated orchids because of its beautiful, fragrant flowers. There are many cultivars with a wide variety of colors.

In Chinese traditional medicine, it is one of the 50 basic plants.

It is the official flower of the Indian state of Sikkim.

It is a very easy house plant that is also suitable for the cold greenhouse.

Dendrobium nobile belongs to the family Orchidaceae, sub-family Epidendroideae, tribe Dendrobieae, sub-tribe Dendrobiinae, genus Dendrobium.


Dendrobium nobile is a sympodial, epiphytic or lithophytic orchid that forms pseudo-bulbs. These are erect, green and fleshy, up to 50 cm long.

The leathery leaves are oblong-oval, up to 11 cm long and 3 cm wide. They fall on average after two years.

The flower stalks are short and bear 1-3 flowers of about 7 cm in diameter, white with a pink edge.

When the mother plant dies, suckers are produced.


South Asia


Epiphytic on trees in mountain forests and lithophytic on rocks in mountain valleys.


Dendrobium: composed of the Greek words dendro (tree) and bios (life).
Nobile: from the Latin nobilis (noble).




  • diurnal: 25-35 °C
  • nocturnal: 15-20 °C


  • diurnal: 20-25 °C
  • nocturnal: 10-15 °C

Provide a marked difference between night and day temperatures of about 7 to 10 °C.


In its habitat, the summers are very cloudy. So it loves much light but no direct sunlight, unless you gradually let it accustomed from spring.

When the leaves turn yellow, it has enough light.


From mid November to February: no water. If the plant looks bad, you may soak it once 1 during the whole winter.

From February, you may begin to water sparingly and then you gradually build up to 2 times per week in the summer if the orchid grows in a pot or daily if it is mounted on cork or a branch.

Tap water can be decalcified by adding 1 ml of vinegar (8%) per liter of water. You can also use distilled water.


Summer: 80 %
Winter: 60 %


Special orchid substrate or mounted on cork or a branch.


From late March to August, use a fertilizer with high nitrogen content.

From September to mid November: use a fertilizer with high potassium content but at half the recommended dilution.


In order to get the plant in bloom, it is important that the rest period with cool temperatures (around 15 °C daytime and 10 °C at night) is observed starting mid-November. The plant can stay outside until right before frost and then has the brought inside, in an unheated room.

The watering and fertilization also have to be completely stopped from mid-November.

Flowering then occurs in January-February.


Every year in spring, immediately after flowering or when growth resumes.


By division in the spring, when repotting.