H. A. Although these plants are usually grown in pots in a greenhouse to flower in late spring and early summer, they can be grown outdoors and are unsurpassed for bedding. In this case adopt the usual half-hardy annual treatment, or sow outdoors in early May. The small, butterfly flowers embrace a very wide colour range with striking blotches and markings, fully meriting the adjective ‘gorgeous’. Light stakes are needed to support the rather fragile stems, both in the greenhouse and outdoors. Heights vary from 15 in. to about 2 ft. outdoors, plants growing much taller under glass.

Sutton’s Cattleya Orchid is an outstanding strain notable for heavy veinings on the extra large blooms. The colour range embraces shades of apricot, yellow, carmine, pink, mauve and purple. Cherry Shades has medium-sized flowers ranging from cherry to scarlet, some crimson-blotched, others with black and yellow tiger-like markings. Monarch Mixed and Wistonensis Hybrids are other good strains. Dwarf Bouquet Mixed produces neat, compact plants only 1 ft. high.

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