Bird Families

Fir monochromatic


  • History of origin and growing in the wild
  • Chinese shoes
  • Distinctive features of papiopedilum
  • Description of the flower
  • Popular varieties for indoor growing with photos
  • Gratrixianum
  • Malaysian Gold, Rothschild or Kinabalu Gold
  • Vietnamese
  • Pretty or Bellatum
  • Apricot
  • Adorable or beautiful
  • Snow white
  • Lawrence
  • Rough-haired
  • Plain
  • Great
  • Bearded
  • Appleton
  • Maudi
  • Black Jack
  • Delofillum
  • Which one is best for a beginner?
  • Home care
  • Temperature
  • Lighting and location selection
  • Watering and humidity
  • Substrate and pot
  • Transfer
  • Top dressing
  • Reproduction
  • During flowering
  • Diseases and pests

The popular name for these unusual orchids is the Lady's Slipper. The orchid family includes several genera with this name. They all have one thing in common - the flower is shaped like a woman's shoe. In the article we will talk about papiopedilums.

History of origin and growing in the wild

The generic name Phragmipedium consists of two Latin roots and literally translates as a sandal (slipper) from Paphos (the hometown of the goddess Venus).

In the wild, papiopedilums are found in Southeast Asia, India, China, Nepal and Oceania. The first flower was found in 1816, and at the end of the 19th century the genus received the status of an independent one. In the areas of habitation, a subtropical or tropical climate.

By the beginning of the 21st century, more than 70 natural species have been described. Most of them are lithophytes, but there are also semi-epiphytic plants. All orchids of the genus Papiopedilum are included in Appendix I of the CITES Convention. On their basis, many hybrids have been created with pedigrees of 15 generations. The culture is successfully grown at home.

Chinese shoes

Yellow cypripedium growing in the Leningrad region

Sometimes unpretentious varieties of cypripedium can be found in Russia. They grow along river banks, at the edge of mixed and coniferous forests, or in small shrubs.

Distinctive features of papiopedilum

Plants have a very short stem. In rosettes from 4 to 12 leaves 10–35 cm long. The shape can be belt-like or broad-linear. The color is different shades of green, monochromatic and with a marble pattern. The leaves are arranged symmetrically. Peduncles from 4 to 50 cm high, usually single-flowered, but there are also several buds (2-13 and more).

Description of the flower

Flowers of different colors: honey, olive, white, yellow, burgundy, brown, pink. They are monochromatic, with a speckled or striped pattern. 6-15 cm in diameter. Petals with straight or wavy edges. Sack-shaped lip in the form of a shoe or shoe. The sail (dorsal sepals) is round or triangular, sometimes curved. The petals are symmetrical, horizontal or drooping. Staminode is large in size, often in a contrasting color.

Paphiopedilums bloom for 2-9 months. The aroma is weak and inconsistent, with hints of vanilla and apple.

In the cut, they stand for about 30 days.

Popular varieties for indoor growing with photos

In addition to the main species, 22 natural hybrids and about a thousand Grex are known. By the type of flowering, they are divided into three groups:

  • one-flowered - one bud on the peduncle,
  • multiflora - the plant has several buds that open at the same time,
  • revolving - multi-flowered orchid, during the flowering of one bud it forms the next.


Paphiopedilum gratrixianum. Plant of the sympodial type. The stem is short. Leaves are light green, dense, elongated lanceolate. In the socket there are 5-6 pieces. Length up to 30 cm, width 3 cm. Peduncle is one-flowered, very elastic, stands straight or slightly deviates to the side. The size of the flower is 5-7 cm.

The sail on the obverse is white, glossy, the seamy surface is pubescent.Vertical large burgundy dots, the base is yellow. The lip and side petals are waxy, shiny, honey-colored. The species is simple to culture, easily tolerates a drop in temperature.

Malaysian Gold, Rothschild or Kinabalu Gold

Paphiopedilum rothschildianum. One of the rarest and most expensive orchids in the world.

In nature, it is found near Mount Kinabalu (northern part of Borneo). Blooms at the age of 15 years. Leaves are leathery, glossy, juicy green. About 40 cm long, 4.5 cm wide. Peduncle up to 50 cm high, forms 4-6 buds. The flowers are about 15 cm in size, but sometimes they reach 35–45 cm in diameter.

The sail is ovoid, with a pointed end. The main tone is cream or light green, with maroon stripes. The lip is almost completely purple. The main difference of the species: the spotted sepals are located almost horizontally.


Paphiopedilum vietnamo. It has a large flower up to 10 centimeters in diameter. The color of the petals is often purple or coffee with a contrasting lip, but can be of a different color.

Often this terrestrial orchid variety is brought by tourists visiting this country: in the markets of Vietnam it is easy to purchase the tubers of this shoe.

Pretty or Bellatum

Paphiopedilum Bellatulum. Plant of monopodial type, lithophyte. Forms a bush of several rosettes, from 10 to 20 cm high. There are 4 or 5 leaves in a rosette. The plates are wide, about 15 cm long. The surface is dark green, smooth, with a marble pattern. The inside is burgundy, slightly pubescent. Peduncle 2-4 cm, slightly curved.

The flower is 8 cm in diameter. The petals are round, wide open, the lip is ovoid. The color is milky white with large burgundy specks. Medium difficulty care.


Paphiopedilum armeniacum. Miniature view up to 12 cm high. The peduncle is short. Leaves about 15 cm long, dark green with a marbled color, the lower surface is covered with small burgundy specks. The flowers are bright yellow, with purple specks in the middle. The lip is wide, rounded, petals with wavy edges. The size of the flower is 9-11 cm. The culture is of medium difficulty in care.

What other yellow orchids are found in nature? Read this article.

Adorable or beautiful

Paphiopedilum venustum. Orchid of the sympodial type, epiphyte. The rosette has 4–7 leaves about 20 cm long and 3–5 cm wide. The upper surface is silvery-green with a marbled pattern, the lower part of the leaf is purple. Peduncle up to 30 cm, one-flowered, erect, painted in a burgundy shade.

The sail is triangular, white with frequent green stripes. Lateral petals are narrow, slightly curled, covered with green stripes and black dots. A reddish tint at the ends. The lip is yellow-green with a distinct venous pattern. Flower size 15 cm.

Snow white

Paphiopedilum niveum. Miniature orchid about 26 cm high. Calcephil. Forms several rosettes with leaves up to 15 cm. The leaf plates are variegated green above, and with burgundy spots below. On the peduncle there are one or two flowers 6–8 cm in diameter, white in color with crimson speck pollen in the center. Medium difficulty care.


Paphiopedilum lawrenceanum. Plant of the sympodial type, lithophyte. In a rosette there are 5-6 wide, variegated leaves up to 19 cm long, 4-7 cm wide. Peduncles are one-flowered, about 31 cm high, pubescent, burgundy. Flowers from 9 to 13 cm in size. The sail is triangular, pinkish-white with stripes.

Lateral petals are short and narrow, greenish-pink in color, with stripes and black, convex dots. The lip is glossy, oval, brick or crimson in color.


Paphiopedilum hirsutissimum. Large epiphytic orchid, about 45 cm high. Leaves are narrow, 35 cm long. Extends several rosettes. Peduncles up to 30 cm, one-flowered, green, covered with dark hairs. The flower is 13–15 cm in size, also covered with hairs.

Hooded sail, green or yellowish with a dark center. Lateral petals are narrow at the base, with wavy edges. The ends are in the form of wide blades.Painted in a greenish-lilac color with purple specks. The lip is greenish-yellow with a chocolate speck.


Paphiopedilum concolor. Rosette of 4–6 variegated leaves 10–16 cm long, with a clear marble pattern. The wrong side is purple with pubescence. The peduncle is erect, usually with one flower, but there may be 3-5 buds. The sail is triangular with a sharp tip. Lateral petals are wide, drooping. The lip is large, oval in shape. Flowers 5–7 cm in diameter, pale green with small crimson specks or pure yellow. Calcephil. Medium difficulty care.


Paphiopedilum insigne. Plant of the sympodial type. The height of the bush is up to 30 cm. In rosettes there are 5-6 leaves 20-30 cm long. Painted in light green with a purple underside and base. Flowers from 7 to 10 cm in diameter. Petals are shiny, waxy. The sail is teardrop-shaped, with wavy edges. In the middle there is a green spot with a dark speck, the edging is white. Lateral petals and dome-shaped lip in greenish-brown tones.


Paphiopedilum barbatum. Compact, multi-rosette orchid with dense dark green leaves and a gray marbled pattern. Peduncle erect, thin. The flower is up to 8 cm in size. The sail is white, proportional, diamond-shaped. In the center there is a fan-shaped pattern of crimson stripes. The base is pale green. The lateral petals are narrowed, in the form of an arc, crimson in color. The lip is elongated, colored dark scarlet.


Paphiopedilum appletonianum. The shoot is sympodial, hidden by a rosette of 6–8 variegated leaves up to 25 cm in length. Inflorescence of one or two flowers, 6-10 cm in diameter. The sail is olive green in the shape of a hood, in the middle there is a shaded burgundy pattern. The lip is large, olive with a burgundy spot. Side petals range in color from pink to wine.


Paphiopedilum Maudiae. Primary hybrid Paphiopedilum callossum. Leaves are variegated with a clear light green pattern. The peduncle is one-flowered, up to 30 cm high. The flower is 10–12 cm in diameter, painted in greenish-white tones. The sail is white, triangular, with green stripes. Lateral petals are green, narrow, twisted slightly upwards. On the surface there is a slight pubescence and convex green dots. The lip is olive, with rare streaks.

Black Jack

Paphiopedilum Black Jack. Maudi hybrid.

An orchid from the black line, although it is painted in burgundy.

The colors are monochromatic, saturated. A flower of a wax structure, glossy, 8 cm in size. On a peduncle, one or less often two buds. The sail is rounded with a sharp tip, slightly bent forward. Lateral petals are narrowed, with wavy edges. The lip is oval. The socket is compact. Leaves up to 15 cm long, dark green. Top with marbled design.


Paphiopedilum Delophyllum. Miniature hybrid. Leaves are oval, 10-15 cm long. Rosette of 6-8 pieces. The marble pattern is blurred. Peduncle is short, thin, slightly pubescent, bears 1-2 buds. The flower is about 10-15 cm. The sail is triangular, ranging from cream to pale olive. The side petals and lip are painted white-pink with small burgundy specks. The plant is easy to care for.

Which one is best for a beginner?

It is advisable for beginners to buy only species papiopedilums. There are a lot of hybrid plants, and manufacturers do not provide information about their origin, so it is not clear how to grow them. And although this genus is quite hardy, each plant has its own special care requirements.

Getting to know the culture will be successful if you start with Gratrixianum and Bellatum.

Home care

Different types of papiopedilum are selective in terms of conditions of detention. In nature, they grow on calcareous and clay soils, under trees (less often on trees). There are generalized rules for care, but each species group needs an individual regimen.


It is desirable for all varieties to provide a difference between night and day temperatures of + 3 ... + 5 ° С.

  1. orchids with narrow monochromatic leaves - in summer + 18 ... + 22 ° С, in winter + 15 ... + 17 ° С,
  2. with narrow spotted leaves - in summer +23 ° С, in winter +18 ° С,
  3. species and hybrids with wide spotted leaves - in summer +20 ° С, in winter +17 ° С,
  4. continuously flowering varieties - in summer +22 ° С, in winter +19 ° С.

Lighting and location selection

Daylight hours are not less than 12 hours. Most species require bright, diffused light. This is a must for a multiflora group with monochromatic leaves. There are shade-tolerant and even shade-loving plants - more often orchids with a marbled leaf color.

The best place would be a window sill in the western or eastern part of the apartment.

Watering and humidity

At the optimum temperature, the air humidity of 40-50% is sufficient. If the heat level rises, the humidity is increased to 60–70%. Watered as the upper word of the substrate dries, and during the rest period after complete drying.

Substrate and pot

It is better to choose a pot that is small and a little cramped, with a wide neck, with a height of 15 cm. It should have holes for aeration and drainage of water.

The substrate is neutral, slightly acidic or slightly alkaline. It depends on the type of orchid. It is harvested from pine bark of different fractions, shells, coconut chips, small pebbles, gravel, peat and moss.


Young plants are replanted every year. Adults - as needed, every 3 years.

Indications for transplant:

  • cramped pot,
  • decay of roots,
  • planned change of the substrate,
  • damage by pests.

The video shows how to properly transplant pafiopedilum:

Top dressing

Organic fertilizers are alternated with mineral formulations for orchids (1/3 of the standard rate). They are fed 2 times a month. During the dormant period, fertilizer is not applied.


Propagated by dividing the bush when the orchid grows at least 9-12 rosettes. The rhizoma is cut so that there are at least three sockets in each section. It is better to propagate in the spring, immediately after the rest period.

During flowering

Paphiopedilums bloom once or twice a season, each species stably at the same time.

The signal to bloom is a stop list in the center of the new outlet. It may turn out to be empty, but most often it releases a peduncle.

During flowering, it is better not to disturb the orchid, the leaving schedule remains unchanged. After flowering, the culture is transferred to dormancy.

Diseases and pests

Due to mistakes in care (cold watering, lowering temperatures, wet substrate), fungal diseases develop:

  1. late blight,
  2. rhizoctonia,
  3. anthracnose.

In such cases, the substrate is changed, and the plant is treated with a fungidid corresponding to the problem.

The main pests of culture:

  • scale insect and mealybug - wipe the leaves with soapy water and remove insects,
  • spider mite - the bush is doused with a hot shower, the substrate is changed and the plant is treated with Fitoverm.

Pafiopedilums, unusual in their grace, will become a worthy adornment in the collections of connoisseurs of orchids. To get around problems in care, it is important to obtain information about the origin of the species when purchasing.

Description of subalpine fir

Under natural conditions, rough fir has the following characteristics, which differ slightly in cultivated varieties and subspecies:

  • The trunk girth is 45-60 cm.There are specimens 80-90 cm thick.
  • The height of the tree reaches 30-45 m, with cultivation, as a rule, 8 m.
  • The shape of the crown is a narrow cone. Shoots are arranged in dense tiers.
  • Young plants have thin, silvery bark. Gradually the color changes to grayish brown, fracturing appears
  • Young branches are gray, with an ash tint, short pubescent, sometimes glabrous. The needles, directed vertically, grow in two rows.
  • The needles are soft, with a rounded end, flat. Above it is gray-greenish, not shiny, below with two pale, almost white stripes. Typically, needles live up to 9 seasons.
  • Possesses high decorative effect. The green background of the needles perfectly sets off the dark purple, upright buds.
  • The root system is superficial.
  • In nature, it lives up to 250-300 years.


The rough fir comes from the subalpine belt of the western regions of the North American continent. It grows along river valleys, in the highlands, to the borders of alpine meadows. Prefers shaded areas. Favorite neighbors are spruces, pines of various types, hemlock.

The middle zone of Russia and Belarus are also suitable for the successful cultivation of this coniferous species.

Subalpine fir Compacta-Abies lasiocarpa Compacta

Mountain subspecies of lasiocarp of a low-growing type is good for growing in a small area.

  • The crown is compact, shirokokonicheskaya, 2-2.5 m in diameter. The growth of the tree is 2-3 m.
  • Branches are strong, unbreakable, dense, short. Shoots are gray, with an ash tint, reddish pubescent.
  • The needles are dense, firm, not prickly, bluish-silver, not long.
  • Cones are cylindrical, purple with a blue tint, 10 cm long.

Features of growing fir subalpine Compacta:

  • Unassuming care.
  • Endures cold conditions with dignity.
  • Not afraid of snowfalls.
  • Spring frosts retard development.
  • Tolerates a short period of waterlogging.
  • Grows in partial shade. Sun-loving.
  • Drought tolerant.
  • Grows in poor soil.
  • Good disease resistance.
  • The acidity of the soil is neutral.
  • No crown formation is required.

Mountain fir Argentea- Abies lasiocarpa Argentea

It is a decorative subspecies with silvery needles. Young spring shoots of yellow color in combination with silver needles give a stunning decorative effect.

  • The crown is pyramidal, regular, up to 3 m in diameter. Height 6-10 m.
  • The needles are soft, fragrant, up to 4 cm long.
  • Cones are oblong-elliptical, red-violet, 8-11 cm in height.

Features of growing Argentea rough fir:

  • Grows in partial shade. Photophilous.
  • Average frost resistance, increases with age.
  • Moisture-loving. Does not tolerate stagnant water.
  • Suitable soils of any type, except clayey.
  • The soil is fertile, slightly acidic.
  • Shelter is required for the winter for young trees.

Subalpine fir Kenwith Blue

A dwarf, slow-growing variety. Suitable for planting in compositions with small deciduous trees, conifers with other shades of needles, with perennials.

  • The crown is wide-pyramidal up to 1 m high.
  • The needles are light blue, soft.
  • Cones are elliptical, red with a purple tint.

Features of growing fir Kenwith Blue:

  • Sun-loving. Grows in the shade.
  • The soil is acidic, moist, moderately nutritious.
  • Drainage required.
  • Frost resistant.
  • Young animals require shelter.

Subalpine fir Green Globe - Abies lasiocarpa Green Globe

Slow growing, miniature, fluffy variety. Suitable for group and single plantings, alleys.

  • The crown is oval-spherical, 1 m wide and 1 m high, dense.
  • Branches are strong, dense, strongly branching.
  • The needles are green, not long, very soft.
  • Cones are reddish-purple, brown when ripe.

Features of growing subalpine fir Green Globe:

  • Photophilous. Grows in partial shade.
  • Wind resistant.
  • Winter hardy. Doesn't like cold winds.
  • Moderately hygrophilous. Requires drainage.
  • The soil is loamy or sandy loam, weakly, moderately acidic, loose.
  • Air pollution does not tolerate.

Subalpine fir Arizona - Abies lasiocarpa var. Arizonica

A medium-sized, fast-growing subspecies of rough-fruited fir with decorative needles and bark. Suitable for rock gardens and rocky slides.

  • The crown is conical or pyramidal, dense, up to 8 m high, up to 3 m wide.
  • The needles are green, with a bluish tint, up to 5 cm in length. Young branches are ash-blue.
  • Cones up to 7 cm long.

Features of growing subalpine fir Arizonica:

  • Photophilous. Can grow in light partial shade.
  • Winter hardy. Young firs need shelter.
  • Moisture-loving. Requires good drainage.
  • The soil is nutritious, it cannot stand the scarcity of soil.

Fir rough-fruited Arizonica compact form.

Slow-growing, dwarf form of the "Arizonica" subspecies. Ideal for decorating alpine slides. It is planted in heather and rocky gardens.

  • Height up to 1.5 m, diameter 90 cm.
  • The needles are long, greenish-silvery-blue.
  • Shade-tolerant, but in shade conditions the needles turn green.
  • The soil requires moist, nutritious, well-drained soil.
  • Winter hardiness and ability to endure snowfall are good.

Subalpine fir Toenisvorst

A dwarf, slow-growing variety of lasiocarp. The crown is spherical. The needles are greenish-gray, with a blue tint, not long. Annual growth is no more than 5 cm. Very high winter hardiness.

Planting and leaving

Subalpine fir is quite easy to grow, its varieties are numerous and varied. If you follow the simple rules of care and planting, the fluffy beauty will become the pearl of your garden for many decades. In order for a tree to please with its attractive appearance and excellent health, you need to carefully choose a place for its growth and regularly take care of it.

Young plants poorly adapt to unfavorable conditions, suffer from strong winds and drafts. It is recommended to plant other large-sized plants close to them.

Subalpine fir is a shade-tolerant plant that grows well in partial shade. However, a sunny area of ​​the garden is preferable for planting.

For optimal development of the lasiocarp, you need to provide:

  • Fertile soil.
  • Good drainage.
  • Weakly acidic or acidic soil reaction.

A favorable time for disembarkation is early spring or autumn (before the onset of the first frost). After planting, subalpine fir must be systematically watered. Young seedlings need watering.

Mature trees are content with natural rainfall in the central region. During extreme heat and in the south, additional watering is recommended. In addition, sprinkling is done every 2-4 weeks. It is recommended to feed it 3 years after disembarkation. This improves the appearance of the tree, but is not required.

After planting, it is better to cover the trunk circle with mulch - sawdust, peat, tree chips. The thickness of mulching should be 5-10 cm. Loosening of the soil after rain or watering is carried out to a depth of 12 cm, in order to avoid damage to the roots.

Fir seedlings need to be covered before winter. The root system is protected by mulching using spruce branches, dry leaves, peat. The crown is covered with a covering material. To protect against snowfall, a wooden support is installed. For adult specimens for 5-7 years, winter protection is not required, but it is better to update the mulch on the trunk circle before the onset of frost. During the period of heavy snowfalls, the snow from the branches must be shaken off.

Subalpine fir does not need shaping pruning. Dry, diseased and broken off branches are removed in the process of sanitary pruning in the spring or late autumn.

With proper care, lasiocarp is resistant to disease.

Immunity decreases when exposed to:

  • Increased gas content.
  • Smoke.

In general, there is a low resistance to urban conditions.

Application in landscape design

Due to its high picturesqueness and unpretentious care, subalpine fir is massively used in landscape construction. Lasiocarp is recommended to grow in single and joint compositions with coniferous and deciduous trees (birch, maple, linden, spruce, pine, larch), various shrubs. It is used in the design of alleys, in rockeries.