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Jewel Orchids As House Plants

Jewel orchid's foliage guarantees a handsome house plant even when it is not in bloom.

jewel orchid

Photo: Gilrane (flickr)

A Jewel orchid in bloom (with its companion anole in the background!).

Many tropical plants, and also some temperate zone plants that resemble tropicals, make excellent house plants in cold climates.

One fairly easy to grow but underused example is the South East Asian native with the common name of jewel orchid. Its botanical name is ludisia discolor.

This is a plant that grows in soil in a pot, and it has narrow leaves. The color of the leaves varies from dark red to maroon and there is striking veining. The leaves grow on succulent stems that hang over the sides of the pot. The flowers appear in late winter to mid spring and are white in color and a little like snapdragons in form.

This plant likes cool temperatures at night and soil that stays just slightly moist, so do not over water it. Afternoon shade is best, so they do not like a windowsill on the western side of the house.

Jewel orchids are available with several different types of patterned leaves with silver-gold veining. This type of foliage guarantees a handsome house plant even when it is not in bloom. The name is a little deceptive because this plant is not like the orchids that grow on trees.

Moya Andrews

, originally from Queensland, Australia, served as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculties at Indiana University until 2004. In the same year, Moya began hosting Focus on Flowers for WFIU. In addition, Moya does interviews for Profiles, is a member of the Bloomington Hospital Board, and authored Perennials Short and Tall from Indiana University Press.

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  • Moth Orchid

    The bloom doesn’t belong to the foliage.  The bloom is that of a phalaenopsis orchid.  Try again.

  • Melissa

    Yes, I second that remark.  While jewel orchids are lovely, they have a rather unremarkable bloom stalk.  While Phalaenopsis are quite stately and beautiful and long lived flowers.

    Melissa
    http://www.orchids-plus-more.com

  • Keengardeners

    they are lovely!you may also visit:http://www.keengardeners.co.uk

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