Laelia speciosa

Laelia speciosa

Laelia is a genus of orchids that are closely related to Cattleya.

The genus includes 23 species and 1 natural hybrid.

The orchids of this genus hybridize easily with each other but also with Cattleya, Brassavola and Rhyncholaelia.

It differs from Cattleya by its pollinia: there are 8 pollinia, arranged in 2 rows of 4, the lower row upright, the upper row hanging.

Laelia are easily cultivated and suitable for beginners.

The genus Laelia belongs to the family Orchidaceae, sub-family Epidendroideae, tribe Epidendreae, sub-tribe Laeliinae, alliance Cattleya.


Laelia has clearly separated oval pseudobulbs of 6-30 cm long.

One or 2 waxy, leathery leaves develop from the pseudobulb. The leaf measures up to 20 cm.

The inflorescence is a raceme of up to 30 cm long, with a maximum of 8 flowers, growing from the top of the bulb. The flowers can be pink to purple, with a beautifully colored purple lip.

The flowering takes place in spring or autumn.



Amalia, Amalias, Schomburgkia


Laelia: to Gaius Laelius, Roman philosopher and orator


Mexico to southern Brazil



Cool to moderate, depending on the species


Light to partial shade, depending on the species


Keep moist during the growing season, dry during the rest period.

Mexican species must be kept very dry during the rest period while the species that thrive in partial shade prefer uniform moisture.


40-80 %


Coarse mixture for orchids in pots or mounted on bark.


During the growth period weekly specialized orchid fertilizer. Dilute to 1/2 or 1/4 of the recommended dilution during the rest period.


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