Encyclia sp., or Encyclia as it is commonly known, is a small shrub that typically grows between 2-5 feet in height. It is native to the Caribbean and Mexico and is most commonly seen in USDA zones 9-11. Although it can be grown in full sun, Encyclia prefers semi-shaded environments and when grown correctly, has a variety of uses.
One of the most distinctive characteristics of Encyclia is its unusual range of flower colors, ranging from blue, lavender and purple. These flowers typically bloom between late winter and early summer and require full sun to reach their peak. To encourage new blooms, regular pruning and cutting back of dead flowers is recommended.
Encyclia is an epiphyte, which means it typically grows on trees, and has a root system that does not penetrate deep into the ground. It prefers a slightly acidic soil with good drainage and should be kept in bright light but away from direct sunlight. Additionally, it will benefit from regular fertilizing and mulching during the growing season.
In colder regions, growing Encyclia in a pot is possible, but it does require additional care to ensure successful blooms and growth. It should be planted in an appropriately-sized container with well-drained soil, ensuring it never stays wet for too long. A heated greenhouse would be ideal, but in the absence of that, the plants should be kept in a bright but cool area during the winter, while otherwise being kept warm. Pruning should also be continued during the winter to prevent any undesirable growth, and regular fertilizing should be carried out throughout the year.
Overall, Encyclia is easily maintained with the right care and provides a range of impressive colors to any garden. With proper attention, Encyclia can thrive in even the coldest of regions, providing a splash of color when it blooms.