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A picture of a Leopard Orchid

Leopard Orchid

Ansellia africana

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering
Tender

H5-H1c

RHS hardiness

-15°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

1.5m

Max

1.5m

50cm

Min

50cm

Flowering

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images

A photo of Leopard Orchid
A photo of Leopard Orchid
A photo of Leopard Orchid
A photo of Leopard Orchid
A photo of Leopard Orchid

Overview

A magnificent large orchid, this perennial epiphytic plant is found growing in clumps attached to trees. It has white needle-like aerial roots that form a basket like structure which catches decaying leaves for the plant to feed on. If given the right conditions and plenty of bright light, this orchid will flower prolifically. The flowers appear during Spring and are yellow with brown or maroon spots.

Common problems

Scale, red spider mite, mealybug

Harvesting

Flowers can be cut for the vase - it will last around 10 days.

Propagation

Division

Cut through the rhizome which connects the pseudobulb using a sterile knife or cutters. Make sure that each section has at least three pseudobulbs.

Special Features

Attracts useful insects

Hawk moths visit the fragrant flowers at night.

Attracts birds

Eagle owls have been observed making a nest in a large clump of the orchid.

Pot plant

Attractive flowers

Colours range from green to yellow with brown to maroon spots.

Uses

Medicinal

Zulus make a tea from the pseudobulb which is used as an emetic, and the Pedi use it to suppress coughing in young children.