From Academic Kids

Missing image

Closeup of Phalaenopsis flower
Scientific classification

Template:Taxobox subtribus entry Template:Taxobox alliance entry


See text

Phalaenopsis (Blume 1825) is a genus of approximately 60 species of orchid (family Orchidaceae).

The generic name originates from the Greek phalaina, “moth” and opsis, “like”, descriptive of the inflorescences of some species, which resemble moths in flight. For this reason, “Phals” are sometimes called “Moth orchids”.

They are native throughout Southeast Asia from the Himalayan mountains to the islands of Polillo and Palawan of the Philippines and Northern Australia. Orchid Island of Taiwan is named after this orchid.

Most are epiphytic shade plants; a few are lithophytes. In the wild they are typically found below the canopies of moist and humid lowland forests, protected against direct sunlight.

Missing image
Phalaenopsis amabilis (Moon Orchid)

Phalaenopsis shows a monopodial growth habit. An erect growing rhizome produces from the top one or two alternate, thick and fleshy, elleptical leaves a year. The older, basal leaves drop off at the same rate. The plant retains in this way four to five leaves. They have no pseudobulbs. The raceme appears from the stem between the leaves. They bloom in their full glory for several weeks.



The species can be classified into two groups :

  • A group with a long, branched inflorescence (up to 1 m long) and large, almost round flowers with rose or white tints.
  • A group with short stems and less rounded, waxy flowers with more pronounced colors.

Intensive cross-fertilization has produced a great number of hybrids in all colors and variations. These are usually more adaptable to artificial conditions than their botanical ancestors. Most are hybrids of Phalaenopsis amabilis with Phalaenopsis schilleriana or Phalaenopsis stuartiana.

Growing phalaenopses

Phalaenopsis are among the most popular orchids sold as potted plants owing to the ease of propagation and flowering under artificial conditions. They were among the first tropical orchids in Victorian collections. They are extremely easy to grow and flower in the home, as long as some care is taken to provide them with conditions that approximate their native habitats. In nature, they are typically fond of warm temperatures (68 to 95 F/20 to 35 C), but are adaptable to conditions more comfortable for human habitation in temperate zones (60 to 86 F/15 to 30 C). Phals require high humidity (60-70%) and low light of 1,200 to 2,000 foot-candles (12 to 20 klx)). Flowering is triggered by a daily drop in temperature of around 10 degrees Fahrenheit (or 6 degrees Celsius) for 2 to 4 consecutive weeks.


Missing image
Phalaenopsis Barbara Moler x Johanna (a hybrid)
  • Phalaenopsis amabilis : Moon Orchid (Malaysia to Papuasia)
    • Phalaenopsis amabilis subsp. amabilis (Malaysia to Papuasia). Hemicr. or cham.
    • Phalaenopsis amabilis subsp. moluccana (NE. Borneo to Maluku). Hemicr. or cham.
    • Phalaenopsis amabilis subsp. rosenstromii (New Guinea to N. & NE. Queensland). Hemicr. or cham.
  • Phalaenopsis amboinensis (Sulawesi to Maluku).
    • Phalaenopsis amboinensis var. amboinensis (Sulawesi to Maluku). Hemicr. or cham.
    • Phalaenopsis amboinensis var. flavida (Sulawesi) Hemicr. or cham.
  • Phalaenopsis aphrodite (SE. Taiwan to Philippines).
    • Phalaenopsis aphrodite subsp. aphrodite (Philippines) Hemicr. or cham.
    • Phalaenopsis aphrodite subsp. formosana (SE. Taiwan). Hemicr. or cham.
  • Phalaenopsis appendiculata (Pen. Malaysia).
  • Phalaenopsis bastianii (Philippines - Sulu Arch.).
Missing image
Phalaenopsis Everspring King Lee (a hybrid)
  • Phalaenopsis bellina (Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis borneensis (Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis braceana (E. Himalaya to China - Yunnan).
  • Phalaenopsis buyssoniana (Indo-China).
  • Phalaenopsis celebensis (Sulawesi).
  • Phalaenopsis chibae (Vietnam).
  • Phalaenopsis cochlearis (Pen. Malaysia to Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis corningiana : Red Moon Orchid (Borneo - Sarawak).
  • Phalaenopsis cornu-cervi (Indo-China to W. Malesia and Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis deliciosa (Indian Subcontinent to Malesia).
    • Phalaenopsis deliciosa subsp. deliciosa (Indian Subcontinent to Malaysia). Hemicr. or cham.
    • Phalaenopsis deliciosa subsp. hookeriana (E. Himalaya to SC. China). Hemicr. or cham.
  • Phalaenopsis doweryensis (Borneo - Sabah).
Missing image
Phalaenopsis Lipperose - a hybrid
  • Phalaenopsis equestris (Taiwan (Hsiao Lan Y) to Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis fasciata (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis fimbriata (W. Malaysia).
  • Phalaenopsis floresensis (Lesser Sunda Is.).
  • Phalaenopsis fuscata (Vietnam to W. & C. Malaysia)
  • Phalaenopsis gibbosa (Vietnam).
  • Phalaenopsis gigantea (Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis hainanensis (Hainan, China - Yunnan).
  • Phalaenopsis hieroglyphica (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis honghenensis (China - Yunnan).
  • Phalaenopsis javanica (W. Java).
  • Phalaenopsis kunstleri (Myanmar to Pen. Malaysia).
  • Phalaenopsis lamelligera (N. Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis lindenii (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis lobbii (E. Himalaya to Myanmar).
  • Phalaenopsis lowii (Myanmar to W. Thailand).
  • Phalaenopsis lueddemanniana (Philippines).
Missing image
Phalaenopsis Mambo (a hybrid)
  • Phalaenopsis luteola (NW. Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis maculata (Pen. Malaysia, Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis mannii (E. Nepal to China - S. Yunnan).
  • Phalaenopsis mariae (Borneo to Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis mastersii (Assam to Myanmar).
  • Phalaenopsis micholitzii (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis modesta (Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis mysorensis (S. India).
  • Phalaenopsis pallens (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis pantherina (Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis parishii (E. Himalaya to Myanmar, Vietnam).
  • Phalaenopsis philippinensis (Philippines - Luzon).
  • Phalaenopsis pulcherrima (Hainan to W. Malaysia).
  • Phalaenopsis pulchra (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis regnieriana (Thailand).
  • Phalaenopsis reichenbachiana (Philippines - Mindanao).
Missing image
Phalaenopsis Nivacolor (a hybrid)
  • Phalaenopsis robinsonii (Maluku -Ambon).
  • Phalaenopsis sanderiana (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis schilleriana (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis speciosa (Andaman Is., Nicobar Is).
  • Phalaenopsis stuartiana (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis sumatrana (S. Sumatra).
  • Phalaenopsis taenialis (Himalaya to SC. China)
  • Phalaenopsis tetraspsis (Andaman Is., Nicobar Is., NW. Sumatra).
  • Phalaenopsis venosa (Sulawesi).
  • Phalaenopsis violacea (Pen. Malaysia to Sumatra).).
  • Phalaenopsis viridis (Sumatra).
  • Phalaenopsis wilsonii (SE. Tibet to SC. China to W. Guangxi).
  • Phalaenopsis zebrina (Indo-China to W. Malesia).

Natural hybrids

Missing image
Phalaenopsis hybrid
  • Phalaenopsis amphitrita (P. sanderiana P. stuartiana) (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis gersenii (P. sumatrana P. violacea) (Borneo, Sumatra).
  • Phalaenopsis intermedia (P. aphrodite P. equestris) : Star of Leyte (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis leucorrhoda (P. aphrodite P. schilleriana) (Philippines).
  • Phalaenopsis singuliflora (P. bellina P. sumatrana) (Borneo).
  • Phalaenopsis veitchiana (P. equestris P. schilleriana) (Philippines).

External link



  • Harper, Tom. “Phalaenopsis Culture: Advice for Growing 20 Species.” Orchids Magazine, Volume 73, No. 2 (February 2004). Delray Beach, FL: American Orchid Society, 2004.
  • Leroy-Terquem, Gerald and Jean Parisot. Orchids: Care and Cultivation. London: Cassel Publishers Ltd., 1991.
  • Schoser, Gustav. Orchid Growing Basics. New York: Sterling Publishing Co., Inc., 1993.
  • White, Judy. Taylor’s Guide to Orchids. Frances Tenenbaum, Series Editor. New York: Houghton-Mifflin,

es:Phalaenopsis fr:Phalaenopsis zh:蝴蝶兰


Academic Kids Menu

  • Art and Cultures
    • Art (
    • Architecture (
    • Cultures (
    • Music (
    • Musical Instruments (
  • Biographies (
  • Clipart (
  • Geography (
    • Countries of the World (
    • Maps (
    • Flags (
    • Continents (
  • History (
    • Ancient Civilizations (
    • Industrial Revolution (
    • Middle Ages (
    • Prehistory (
    • Renaissance (
    • Timelines (
    • United States (
    • Wars (
    • World History (
  • Human Body (
  • Mathematics (
  • Reference (
  • Science (
    • Animals (
    • Aviation (
    • Dinosaurs (
    • Earth (
    • Inventions (
    • Physical Science (
    • Plants (
    • Scientists (
  • Social Studies (
    • Anthropology (
    • Economics (
    • Government (
    • Religion (
    • Holidays (
  • Space and Astronomy
    • Solar System (
    • Planets (
  • Sports (
  • Timelines (
  • Weather (
  • US States (


  • Home Page (
  • Contact Us (

  • Clip Art (
Personal tools