This is a favorite Paphiopedilum in my collection. It is not particularly large or flashy as Paphiopedilum go, but it is boasting a magical color combination that either makes you think of green fairies or some lost scene from a Willy Wonka movie – depending of course on your imagination or penchant for the anise-flavoured spirits of late 19th-century Parisian artists… The naming however was not nearly as poetic as it is simply named after a certain W.M. Appleton who first brought the species to flower in Europe.
Paphiopedilum appletonianum is a medium to small sized terrest or lithophytic species from the large Sigmatopetalum subgenus. It can be found on Hainan Island just south of China and throughout Indo-China. It grows at a very large altitude span, from 700 up to 2000 meters, so it is fairly temperature tolerant. It is usually found growing in wet forests on steep granite slopes or in damp river canyons in regions without any distinct dry periods, so it likes even moisture and does not want to dry out. The flowers are very long lasting and are elegantly held on a tall erect inflorescence, mine measuring about 40 cm this time. I grow it under medium light in the intermediate growing room, potted in a mix of small to medium bark, lava rocks, perilite and shredded coco husk. A standard mix I use for most of my Paphiopedilum.