December 18, 2012

Stelis ciliolata 'Leia' CHM/AOS

This plant and the photos I've taken of have gotten some attention recently.  A close-up of the flowers was used on the cover of the December 2012 issue of Orchids, the magazine of the American Orchid Society.  That is a real honor which I've had only once before and that exactly a year ago (December 2011).  Both the original photo and the cover are shown below.

Last Saturday was the monthly judging of the Pacific Northwest Center, held at the Center for Urban Horticulture at the University of Washington.  If I had known how bad traffic was going to be I probably would have stayed home, but in the end was glad I went.  This plant was given a Certificate of Horticultural Merit at the judging and now has the clonal name 'Leia.'

It was awarded with "approximately 100 dark red-purple successive flowers and 216 buds on 40 mature and 10 immature ... inflorescences," and the description mentioned the "striking color contrast on a floriferous petite plant."  The plant is from Ecuador, blooms faithfully every year at about this time and is grown in a 6 cm clay pot in sphagnum moss with other cool growing orchids.

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