I wrote about this lovely little Masdevallia roseola back in May, and I thought the bloom it was producing then was quite impressive. Oh, and it really was, but after only a brief rest late in the summer it is back at it again with double the effort. This has turned into quite the little specimen and I just adore it! The definition of a specimen plant is “a plant that can serve as a focal point all by themselves in a garden or indoor landscape, often referred to as living art.” I definitely think this Masdevallia fits that description, even though it does not quite qualify as an orchid specimen plant since “a specimen orchid is a well grown plant with multiple leads and and flower spikes.” (Thanks Bill) None the less, it is an impressive plant, especially since it is demanding attention not only by its abundance and beauty, but also by its scent. The whole vivarium smells like warm honey in the afternoon, it is quite lovely.
Results like these are the very best rewards for all the work that went into the extensive building project that the cool vivarium really was. I bloomed this plant last winter on the windowsill in less than ideal conditions, but I only got two flowers then and I never detected any scent. Now a year later, after only 6 months in the new environment especially designed for these kinds of orchids, we have this… impressive to say the least.
I have been dreaming about growing Masevallia for years, and I did so with some success without this special setup. The amazing difference I can see now however, in the very same plants, when I can provide the proper temperature and humidity levels is remarkable. I am so pleased with the cool vivarium, it really is performing beyond expectation. There are no blueprints for how to build these you know. You just have to use your own imagination, collect ideas and advice from fellow enthusiasts online, and go for it… adjusting as you go.