Thelymitra rubra

Source: Bernd Haynold

Thelymitra rubra

The genus Thelymitra is also called sun orchids because the flowers only open fully on warm and dry days.

The flowers are usually very brightly colored, mainly blue in all its shades but also purple, brown, red, pink, yellow or white with stripes or spots in a contrasting color.

The column forms a hood at the top that surrounds the pollinia.

The flowers resemble those of lilies, so they lure the pollinators of lilies.

Specific to the genus is that in most species the lip is the same color and form as the sepals and petals.

They usually grow in symbiosis with a fungus and are therefore almost impossible to grow.

They are mainly terrestrial orchids that grow on poor soil.

The genus Thelymitra is part of the family Orchidaceae, sub-family Orchidoideae, tribe Diurideae, sub-tribe Thelymitrinae.


Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Philippines