Sunday, September 30, 2012

An Orchid That Smells like Chocolate Mint!

Stanhopea occulata, blooming in the back yard. This somewhat variable orchid species is named for the red eye-like spots that cover the flowers. I can alway tell when there's an occulata blooming as there is a powerful chocolate-mint fragrance that carries a good 20 feet. The pendent flowers sometimes get caught in other baskets or in the growing media as they attempt to burrow down to hang below the plant (in nature, below the branch that they are growing on). This one was stuck in another basket. I would have never even known it was in bloom had that powerful chocolate-mint fragrance not alerted me to the blossoms. I feel kind of like an orchid sniffer dog...

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