Plant in Focus – Medinilla magnifica

16 July 2015

Has been voted the Office Plant of the Year 2015. So let’s take a closer look at this award-winning plant. Native to the Philippines, it is commonly known as the Philippine orchid and like other orchids, it is an epiphyte. The plant can grow up to 3m tall, with opposite, firm, leathery leaves, which grow to 20-30 cm long in an ovate shape with a short point. The flowers grow in panicles up to 50 cm long, with ovid pink brachts. The individual flowers are up to 25 mm

in size, and are pink, red or violet. The fruits are violet, fleshy berries, about 1 cm wide.

Health Facts: Like other orchids absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen at night. Therefore they make great plants for bedrooms and hospital bedside tables.

Environment: Medinilla prefer high indirect light, in the spring and summer months and direct light in the winter months. They are from the tropics, so prefer a temperature of between 18 – 27oC. Do not let it get colder than this.

Plant Care: Water moderately, letting the upper part of the pot dry out between watering. Medinilla also like high humidity, so place on a tray of gravel and water to increase humidity. Very prone to red spider mite.