Laeliocattleya Parysatis coerulea is the hybrid of Cattleya bowringiana var. lilacina with Laelia praestans (pumila) 'Gatton Park' registered by Sir Jeremiah Coleman in 1918. For many years this petite, easily grown and flowered, blue hybrid has been considered sterile. To the contrary, it is producing progeny in abundance.

Our plants of Lc. Parysatis coerulea are grown near the glass on the south side of the house and bloom two to three times a year. Because of the short time interval between pollenation and embryo culturing and since the flowers are readily available throughout the year, it has been used as a pod parent exclusively. It is pollenated within the first three to four days of opening. The seed pods are removed and embryo cultured four months from the date of pollenation or when the column starts yellowing. From our experience, a pod that forms and stays on the plant three and a half to four months will produce some seedlings. A four bulb plant can carry one pod easily. We have had eight on a plant of an equal number of bulbs. Seed pods do not hinder the next flowering, except when they are initiated in the fall.

The first crosses made with this hybrid were with C. mossiae 'Reineckiana, Blue Lip' and C. gaskelliana 'Blue Dragon'. The yield was very low. The succeeding crosses have been hybrids with Lc. Blue Boy, Lc. Schilleriana 'Werkhauserii', and C. warneri var. coerulea in addition to remakes of the first two. The crosses with C. mossiae and C. warneri are both giving low yield while the others are giving numerous seedlings which exhibit vigorous growing characteristics and readily adjust once out of flask. They can be grown under relatively high light intensity, also.

We expect Lc. Parysatis coerulea to breed much on the order of C. Ariel coerulea and C. Portia coerulea but imparting smaller size and lip. The flatness and deep blue of the laelia parent is expected to predominate.

(The Orchid Digest, Vol. 31, No. 4, April, 1967, p. 119.)

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