So, the Dracula indulgence continues. Dracula sodiroi is an intermediate to cool growing terrestrial or epiphytic species named after Father Sadira who first discovered it in 1900. It grows in the northwestern regions of the Pichincha provice in Ecuador at altitudes between 1800 to 2300 meters. The bell shaped flowers form on erect racemes and the pendant growing style further enhances the bell connection. Apparently the characteristic to produce more than one flower at the same time on this erect raceme is rather unique within the genus. According to the book Draculas of Ecuador, the flowers of subsp. erytrocodon are bright red color in contrast to the orange color of the typical form. I rather prefer this lovely shade of red and I am glad mine turned out to be that of the latter. But of course Kew does not recognize the subspecies definition. It is quite sensitive to drops in humidity, last year the flowers would not open all the way, and this year the tips of the sepals have shriveled ever so slightly, but I am still very pleased as it is at least an improvement from last year. Besides, I am just happy that is is blooming. I lost more than 50% of the plant mass last year during the devastating fungus outbreak. I grow it potted in the cool vivarium under low light, rather wet and in high humidity with good air circulation.
Dracula sodiroi (Schltr.) Luer, Selbyana 2: 197 (1978).
Synonym: Dracula sodiroi subsp. erythrocodon Luer & Dalström, Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 64: 125 (1997).