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Clamshell orchid, cockleshell orchid
Prosthechea cochleata
Orchidaceae
 

Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

General Landscape Uses: Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations.

Ecological Restoration Notes: A rather rare epiphyte in hammocks and swamps.

Availability: Grown by enthusiasts and botanical gardens.

Description: Epiphytic wildflower.

Dimensions: About 6-12 inches in height. Forms clums broader than tall.

Growth Rate: Slow.

Range: Miami-Dade, Collier and Lee counties and the Monroe County mainland; West Indies, Mexico and Central America. Very rare north of Miami-Dade and Collier counties.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations north to Martin and Charlotte counties.

Habitats: Swamps and moist forests.

Soils: Epiphytic; grows on the trunks and branches of trees and shrubs.

Nutritional Requirements: Moderate; can grow on nutrient poor substrate, but needs some nutrient inputs to thrive.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.

Drought Tolerance: Low; requires moist substrate and high humidity and is intolerant of long periods of drought.

Light Requirements: Light shade.

Flower Color: Purple and greenish.

Flower Characteristics: Showy.

Flowering Season: All year.

Fruit: Capsule containing numerous minute seeds. Dispersal is by wind.

Horticultural Notes: Primarily grown from seed in a sterilized flask.

Comments: It is listed as endangered by the state of Florida. See also the Florida Wildflower Foundation's Flower Friday page and Florida Natural Areas Inventory's Field Guide to the Rare Plants of Florida page (Chafin 2000).


Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton


Other data on Prosthechea cochleata available from:



 
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