Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ (Moth Orchid)

Even before I delved deep into the world of botany, I knew that orchids are picky. I initially veered away from them, as I thought that they were too difficult to grow for me. Eventually, though, my interest in them peaked as I discovered Moth Orchids. When visiting the Missouri Botanic Garden Climatron and SIU Carbondale’s greenhouses, I came across some ‘Alice Gloria’ hybrids. Naturally, I began to look into the extremely diverse and magnificent world of orchids. After some research, I’ve found this particular variety to be most captivating.

Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ (Moth Orchid)
Deciduous: no
Hardiness Zones: 10-12 (Keep indoor temperatures 70-85 during the day and 60-65 at night.)
Height: 0.75-3.00 feet tall
Diameter: 0.50-2.00 feet across
Growth Rate: Variable among Phalaenopsis species and hybrids (anywhere from very slow to very fast)
Age: perennial
Root System: Relatively large, long, inflexible, silver-white with green-colored new growth
Family: Orchidaceae
Subspecies: few to no subspecies, mostly hybirds

Tolerates: Not much, it’s an orchid.
Problems (major): Improper watering frequently leads to root rot. Humidity below 50% (and above 80%) may impair growth.
Problems (minor): Orchids require a drop in temperature (about 10 degrees Fahrenheit) during the night, which can be problematic for orchids grown indoors. Mealybugs and scale insects are occasionally bothersome. Scale, mealybugs, snails, slugs, stem rot, root rot, and bud blast.
Poisonous: presumably not

Soil requirements: Bark or moss are acceptable. Soils comprised of Redwood bark chips, peat moss, and perlite work well. The should soil remain evenly moist most of the time, with short periods where the soil can dry out. Fertilizer with a 20-20-20 mix is beneficial when these orchids are noticeably growing.
Air Requirements: high humidity
Watering requirement: moderate, keep the soil fairly moist
Sun requirement: Part-shade or indirect light (South or east facing windows work well.)

Leaf size: unspecified (no more than a foot in length and six inches in width)
Leaf shape: Broad, flat
Flowering frequency: Moth orchids usually flower only once per year, but the flowers may stay on the plant for 3 months. A drop in temperature (around 5-10 degrees Fahrenheit on average) encourages flowering spikes. Flowering occurs in winter and spring.
Flower color(s): white
Flower gimmick: none
Flower spike: The flower spike (stem-looking thing) produces around 20 flowers (not all at the same time).
Petals/Sepals: The petals are broader than the sepals (typical of Group I Phalaenopsis). The petals have rounded edges while the sepals are more pointy.
Lip/Column: Each flower’s lip is colored yellow and flare out a bit. The column resides at the flower’s center.
Stigma/Anthers: The stigma is very difficult to see; the anthers are mostly hidden.
Epiphyte: yes
Roots: Fairly large, long, inflexible, silver-white with green-colored new growth, can cling to diaganol structures (like tree branches)
Daytime temperature: 70-85 degrees Fahrenheit
Nighttime temperature: 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit

Notable characteristics:
Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ orchids are typically epiphytes, plants that grow regularly on tree trunks or similar supportive structures, in their native homes.

Uses:
Almost always grown as a specimen plant for its outstanding beauty when flowering. Although very delicate, its flowers are exceedingly majestic.

Sources used:

 

Phalaenopsis_'Alice_Gloria' Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ growing at the Missouri Botanic Garden (photo taken by me, December 2013)

Phalaenopsis_Moth_Orchid A Moth Orchid growing at SIU Carbondale’s greenhouse (photo taken by me, 8 February 2014)

Phalaenopsis_'Alice_Gloria'_SIU_1 Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ growing at SIU Carbondale’s greenhouse, fully opened flowers and visible buds present (photo taken by me, 8 February 2014)

Phalaenopsis_'Alice_Gloria'_SIU_2 Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ growing at SIU Carbondale’s greenhouse, two flower spikes (photo taken by me, 8 February 2014)

The images provided were photographed by me, and they may be used for educational and informational purposes (provided that this article and/or blog is properly cited/referenced beforehand).

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18 Comments

Filed under Plant Analysis

18 responses to “Phalaenopsis ‘Alice Gloria’ (Moth Orchid)

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