Ctsm. Gerhard Leiste 'Jumbo Orchids' (pileatum x Jumbo Pearl) , MC1079
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Item #: MC1079
Our Price: $25.00
Plant Size (R)  

Description & Details

We are thrilled to offer the first USA release of this remarkable hybrid Catasetum (abbreviated Ctsm.) from the renowned Jumbo Orchids of Taiwan, who breeds some of the most amazing Ctsm. alliance.

The pod parent, Cstm. pileatum, is a widespread lowland species found in Trinidad, throughout the basins of the Negro and Orinoco Rivers in Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, and Ecuador in hot, humid rainforests. Its spindle-shaped pseudobulbs grow about 6 inches tall and the large leaves can reach about 16 inches long; typical plants are almost 2 feet tall. The pollen parent, Ctsm. Jumbo Pearl, is a compact sized hybrid with dark brown flowers with a contrasting yellow stripe in the lip.

 Ctsm. have a couple of peculiar characteristics unique to the genus. One, it normally produces flowers of a single sex. Any given inflorescence will usually carry flowers that are either male or female, with male flowers more prevalent and showy. Female inflorescences are typically shorter, fewer-flowered and the fleshy flowers are fewer in number, and not as pretty as the male flowers. Two, male flowers have a specialized trigger mechanism for pollination. When a visiting pollinator, such as a bee, accidentally trips the trigger, the pollinia (mass of pollen grains) are forcefully ejected from the anther cap and adhere to the bee's body. The tension in these triggers is substantial and pollinia can be thrown several inches (reportedly up to 6 feet if no obstacles are encountered) from the plant and at a speed measured in excess of 10 ft/second. The force involved in the impact appears to serve two purposes; first to cause the sticky pollinia to adhere firmly to the insect and second to get the insect to go to another flower. We do not recommend triggering the mechanism on purpose as the flower quickly fades once the pollinia is ejected.


The genetic composition of Ctsm. Gerhard Leiste is 65.63% Ctsm. pileatum, 25.0% Ctsm. tenebrosum, 9.38% Ctsm. expansum. Ctsm. Gerhard Leiste 'Jumbo Orchids' has a more compact in growth habit compared to its Cstm. pileatum parent, making it suitable for growing under lights. The inflorescences of Gerhard Leiste 'Jumbo Orchids' are produced near the base of the maturing pseudobulb typically in late summer or fall. The male flowers are an impressive 4 inches wide. Mature pseudobulbs on well-grown plants may produce several inflorescences at once or spread out over a fairly long period of time. Male flowers are an impressive 4 inches wide and very fragrant! Grow this plant in intermediate light (no direct sun) with good air movement. Temperature range should be a maximum of 90°F to a minimum of 60°F and humidity is high at night even in the dry season. This makes it ideal for growing outdoors in warm and humid climates.


Typically, Ctsm. plants have a growing season and a dormant season. However, because of Ctsm. pileatum parent in this hybrid, it may not go completely dormant or only for a short period of time. This time interval can be quite short and successful growers provide a winter rest only if the plant's leaves turn yellow and start to fall off (indicating onset of dormancy). This is normal, do not be alarmed. After leaf drop, stop fertilizer, moisture can be reduced or stopped completely. While at rest, if the bulbs appear to be shriveling, you can lightly spray them. New growth appears in spring and you can see roots emerging. Increase watering and fertilize when leaves are about 3 inches. It is very susceptible to spider mites that come with hot, dry conditions and poor air circulation while the plants are in growth.

 Plants are best grown potted. Some successful growers use straight sphagnum moss in clay pots top-dressed with time-release fertilizer (in low-humidity climates plastic pots will retain moisture longer). Others recommend bark or tree-fern based potting mix. Regardless of the mix chosen, it must hold adequate moisture, drain rapidly so excess moisture isn't a problem and aerate the roots. Ctsm. are  very susceptible to spider mites that come with hot, dry conditions and poor air circulation while the plants are in growth. This plant makes an excellent companion plant to Cattleyas as it has similar cultural requirements. Recommended for anyone looking for something different, extraordinary, and unusual.

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