The Bulbophyllum Elizabeth Ann is a sympodial epiphyte orchid hybrid. It was registered in 1969 by J.Chambers and is a cross between Bulbophyllum longissimum and Bulbophyllum rothschildianum. This orchid is one of the most famous Bulbophyllum orchids, due to its pendant, showy blooms. This orchid can also be found under the name Cirrhopetalum, but recent reclassification placed this orchid under the Bulbophyllum species. It also received an FCC/AOS award.
Blooms have a tendency to be pendant and the inflorescence is formed by 6-10 individual flowers . The above sepals and petals are short and have a light buttery color, marked with dark stripes. On the edge they have short hair like formations, while the lip is small and has a bright pink color. The lip is movable, meaning that it can appear to jiggle if the flower is lightly tapped.
Unlike other orchids, the main focal point of this orchid is not the lip, but the two bottom sepals which elongate and thin out towards the tip. The base color is a buttery light one, but thick, bright pink stripes flow along its length, giving the impression that the inflorescence is actually pink. In bright light, or direct sunlight, small sparkles can be noticed along the lower sepals.
The inflorescence is impressive compared to the size of the orchid, measuring about 20 cm in length and about 10-12 cm in width. The stem starts at the base of the pseudobulb and measures between 20-30 cm. Big specimen sized plants can have an impressive display of blooms on multiple pseudobulbs.
This orchid doesn’t have a foul smell. The fragrance is somewhat natural and reminds of forest or lake vegetation. It is not something you can call pleasant, but it isn’t unbearable. As fragrance is differently perceived depending on the person, it might not be desirable for some people. It is moderately strong, usually one needs to stand close to the orchid to sense it. The blooms last for 2 to 3 weeks.
The pseudobulbs are about 2-3 cm in height and about 1-2 cm in width, with an oval shape. As they age they can form a few visible ridges. The normal color for this orchid is dark green. The leaves are elongated, measuring about 10-12 cm in length and about 1.5-2 cm in width. They have a glossy texture and are quite fleshy and sturdy.
The roots are very thin and usually stay short, making shallow pots or mounts ideal for these orchids. When they are dry they can be silvery gray and can turn green when watered. Actively growing roots can have light green to brown, red tips.
Pseudobulbs are connected by a rhizome that is visible between them, as each new growth starts from the base of a pseudobulb. Spikes can emerge from the same area, but new growths are green and glossy when they appear, while flower spikes are not glossy and have a beige color.
Propagation of this orchid can be done through division, each division should have at least 3 fully grown pseudobulbs for a fast growth further on.
Soft spots: shriveling of the pseudobulbs if the orchid is allowed to dry out too much in between waterings.
Overall this orchid is easy to care for even in a normal home environment, as long as watering is not neglected.
Bulbophyllum Elizabeth Ann ‘Buckleberry’ Video Presentation