Cattleya Dolosa, a gallery on Flickr.
Genus: Cattleya, Species: Cattleya Dolosa
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Habitat: Brazil. Cattleya dolosa grows on rock outcroppings or sometimes trees.
Plant Size: Medium. The plant is very similar to Cattleya walkeriana. Each pseudobulb has two leaves.
Flower Size: 5″ (to 12.5 cm)
Flower Description: Fragrant. The flower of Cattleya dolosa is similar in size and form to Cattleya walkeriana. Each 3 inch flower stem has between one to (rarely) four flowers. Cattleya dolosa has very waxy flowers of heavy substance which are long-lived.
Bloom Season: Spring
Growing Temperature: Intermediate to Warm. In its native environment, summer days average 82-84 F (28-29 C), and nights average 71-72 F (22 C), with a diurnal range of 11-12 F (6-7 C). Winter days in its habitat average 77-79 F (25-26 C), and nights average 64-65 F (17-19 C), with a diurnal range of 9-11 F (5-6 C).
Light: Standard Cattleya light. Bright, indirect light.
Humidity: Provide 80-85 percent humidity for most of the year. Its acceptable for summer humidity to drop into the 75-80 percent range.
Water: Cattleya dolosa should be watered regularly throughout the year, but they must dry rapidly after watering. Make sure that the plants never stay dry for long periods of time, however. Give mounted plants a daily misting in summer with a thorough soaking of the entire plant and slab twice a week in summer, or three times a week in extremely hot weather (adjust for your climate). Water should be reduced somewhat in winter, but plants should never stay dry for long periods.
Growing Media: Cattleya dolosa is frequently grown mounted on cork slabs or in baskets, but some growers report success using pots with extremely open fast draining medium such as coarse bark nuggets. Whatever the choice of medium, it is critically important that the roots dry rapidly after watering or root rot is a near certainty. Use very small slabs for mounting this species because larger slabs retain to much water. Tree-fern slabs hold more water and should only be used only in very dry growing conditions. When mounting, do not use sphagnum moss between the mount and the plant because it retains too much moisture and promotes rot. Divide, repot, or remount only when new root growth is just starting. This lets the plant become established in the shortest possible time with the greatest success.
Additional Information: It was once thought that Cattleya dolosa was a natural hybrid between Cattleya walkeriana and Cattleya harrisoniana or Cattleya loddigesii. However, after years of hybridizing, Cattleya dolosa was not able to be reproduced through experimentation and was awarded species status. It is rare in cultivation but worthy of a spot in your collection.
Synonyms: Epidendrum dolosum, Cattleya eximia, Cattleya walkeriana var. dolosa
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