Pleiones are a kind of miniature orchid that may be found in China and northern India. The Chinese species are almost immune to cold, and some of them are quite simple to cultivate. In order to establish a race of easy-care orchids in hues of white, pink, and yellow, the simple species have been crossed with one other and with other species that are more difficult to cultivate but more attractive.
These orchids need compost that is open and extremely good at allowing water to drain out, a lot of water after the leaves develop, and then they need to be kept cold and dry once the leaves have fallen off.
The Pleione formosana species is likely the most simple of the group, making it an excellent choice for beginners. It is very customizable, and you may choose from a variety of options that are presented in the form of named forms. In recent times, a certain amount has been made available. This one goes by the name “Little Winnie.”
There are additional white variants of Pleione formosana, two examples of which are shown down below. “Kate” is on the left and is smaller with mauve lip marks, while “Clare” is on the right and has lemon markings.
The easygoing disposition of the Pleione formosana has been passed on to many of its offspring, making it an essential component in the creation of the popular Pleione hybrids.
Another species that is extremely simple to care for, the Pleione limprichtii is more compact than the Pleione formosana.
The Pleione speciosa is a famous species due to its luxurious coloring and graceful shape. The “Blakeway- Phillips” clone is the most frequent one used for cannabis production. It was named after the Reverend Blakeway Phillips, who was responsible for spreading the plant in the 1960s.
Pleione hybrids (I).
One of the most significant breakthroughs in the world of pleiones occurred in the 1970s when Dr. Harberd crossed the docile Pleione formosana with the difficult Pleione x confusa, a natural yellow hybrid, in order to create the stunning Shantung hybrids. This was one of the most important developments in the world of pleiones. These span from colors pink to apricot, and then finally to yellow. Because Pleione species are so varied, the hybrids that result from them are as varied. Because of this, the hybrid itself is given a name, and then a specific selection or clone is given an additional name. This particular specimen of Pleione Shantung is known as “Muriel Harberd.” It is interesting to note that the color of Shantungs is impacted by the temperature at which it spends the winter resting, which means that the same plant might emerge in various hues in different years.
The “Maryfield clone” that is Pleione Shantung
Gerry Munday was the Pleione. This is a complicated hybrid having genetic material from both the speciosa and the forrestii species (forrestii is a yellow species and here has imparted some yellow colouration to the lip).
The Pleione el Pico “Kestrel” is a stunning example of the color combination of pink and scarlet.
Pleione hybrids (II).
Some of the hybrids with the biggest flowers on the market today are descended from the Pleione Rakata strain, which is a cross between Shantung and P. speciosa. Some clones are quite attractive, while others have certain temperature requirements throughout the winter months in order for them to produce flowers. This plant is a clone that has not been named.
Pleione Piton is the result of a genetic hybrid between P. formosana and P. yunnanensis. It inherits the vigor of the formosana parent as well as the delicate coloring of the yunnanensis parent. A terrific personal fave!
Another fan favorite, Pleione Soufriere is a lip color that is a gorgeous lemon yellow.
Pleione hybrids (part III).
The hybrid Pleione Vesuvius is of medium size and has a yellow lip that is marked quite prominently. This is a choice that has not been categorized.
The Pleione Vesuvius “Phoenix” is a remarkable variety that stands out because of its bright pink petals and an almost orange lip that is highlighted with crimson.
The flower burst of magenta, red, and orange is known as Pleione Stomboli “Fireball”.
Pleione hybrids (IV)
The intriguing Pleione Krakatoa hybrid is a member of the P.yunnanesis species.
Pleione Irazu “Cheryl” is a robust plant that has enormous blooms in an unusual coloration that is yellow coated with purple and has a beautiful lip.
The Pleione Tolima is a hybrid that was created by crossing the P. speciosa and P. formosana species, however, it is very obviously related to the former. This is the “Moorhen” clone that was created.
Pleione hybrids (V)
Pleione Brigadoon (P.speciosa x P. x confusa) (P.speciosa x P. x confusa). This is one of the first pleiones to bloom in my garden, but it never seems happy to me since its blossoms usually hang down. There is no question that other clones have a more appealing form!
The introduction of P. hookeriana into the Pleione gene pool makes the Captain Hook strain of Pleione a little bit unique. I adore it because of how simple it is and how unadulterated the colors are. a cross between P. formosana and P. hookeriana
Pleione hybrids (VI)
The “Ducat” clone of the pure yellow Pleione Shantung is widely considered to be among the best and most desirable of the Shantung varieties. Thank goodness, costs have come down, and it’s now at a point where everybody can afford it!
Pleione Shantung “Gwen,” which has a touch of apricot on the petals of the flower.
Another stunning Shantung, this one goes by the name “Top Score,” and it’s a variety that I don’t believe is sold commercially. It demonstrates another element of this multifaceted but always desired grex.