Types of Cymbidium Orchids

Cymbidium orchid is a genus comprising about 52 species of orchids. The name was derived from the word kumbos, which is a Greek word that means ‘hole or cavity’. This refers to the shape of the base of the lip. Cymbidium plants are known to grow about 60 cm tall and the racemes grow 90 cm tall. The raceme grows from the base of the pseudo bulb. Each flower has a diameter of 5 to 10 cm but this depends on the species. Cymbidium orchids bloom during winter with each plant having fifteen or more flowers. Some of the types of Cymbidium Orchids are discussed as follows:

Cymbidium aestivum

This is one of the types of Cymbidium orchids species, which blooms on a pendant inflorescence. They are lithophytic and autotrophic. The pseudo bulbs are sub-fusiform and slightly bilaterally flattened and enclosed inside the leaves. The leaves are lorate and papery with the midveins rising abaxially from the leaf base to the apex. The inflorescence is lateral and spread horizontally. Flowers are not scented and measure 4 to 6 cm in diameter. Sepals and petals are whitish or yellowish heavily tinged pale purple brown.

Cymbidium aliciae

This species is found in Sulawesi and Philippines on the Luzon Island, which is in the Montane forests at elevations of about 300-2750 meters. They are more medium sized, warm growing semi terrestrial with no pseudo bulbs. Have pale green leaves which are 8-10, clustered, linear, a bit leathery, grooved at the base, curved, and they bloom on a recemose.

Cymbidium aloifolium

Although widely spread this species is not variable as many others. The racemes are pendulous and continue growing as the flowers open. Has a rigid and thick leaves, which is typical of the section. Flower scape measures about 30-90 cm long and have 14-45 flowers, which are lightly scented.

Cymbidium atropurpureum

Also thick leafed with dark flowers. Flower scape is also pendulous measuring 28-75cm in length and has 7-33 flowers. Flowers are coconut scented with sepals, which are deep maroon to dull yellow in color. It is grown in a heated glass-house at a minimum 120C.

Cymbidium bicolor

Has three subspecies namely bicolor, pubescens and obtusum. Also has pendulous recemes that grow as the flower opens. The leaves are thick and rigid. The flower scape measures 10-72cm long and are normally 5-26 in number. They are also grown in heated glasshouses.

Cymbidium canaliculatum

The herb is epiphytic and forms dense clumps. Pseudo bulbs are erect and ovoid measuring 8-12cm long by 3-4cm wide. They are gray-green to green in color with the base having papery bracts. Leaves are scattered along the pseudo bulb and are alternate, distichous and sessile. Inflorescence is axillary raceme, which is erect to pendulous from the base of the pseudo bulb. Flowers spread widely and are star shaped. They vary in size (25-45mm by 20-40mm), fragrance and color (brown purple, pale green or dull red).

Cymbidium chloranthum

They are epiphytic and have upright spikes instead of arching or pendulous spikes. Scape measures 30-47cm in length and have 15-25 yellow green flowers, which are 3cm long. Are found on trees in tropical forests with having moist shades.

Cymbidium concinnum

A flora of China, they are epiphytic. Pseudo bulbs are sub-ovoid, flattened bilaterally and are enclosed in leaf bases. Leaves are leathery, adjoined at the base, having an acuminate apex and are unlobed. Inflorescence originates from the leaf axils and arch. Floral bracts are triangular in shape. Flowers are scented and open widely.

Cymbidium cyperifolium

This is another type of Cymbidium orchids that is very fragrant. They are easiest of all oriental cymbidiums to grow. Have a deep green bloom with potent floral fragrance.

Cymbidium dayanum

It is medium sized, epiphytic to terrestrial species. Grow on tree trunks and are more common in Eastern Himalayas, Assam India, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines. Pseudo bulbs are ellipsoidal and are enveloped in scarious leaf bases. The leaves are leathery, acute to acuminate, pale green and do not have petioles.