Selenipedium is a genus of the Orchid family (Orchidaceae) (Subfamily Cypripedioideae). The genus has been given its own tribe, Selenipedieae, and subtribe, Selenipediinae.
These orchids are found in Costa Rica, South Colombia, Ecuador, and the Amazon river basin in Brazil.
The seed capsules of these orchids especially Selenipedium chica were formerly used as vanilla substitutes, but selenipediums are now rarely cultivated. Partly this is because of the difficulty of doing so, but is probably also due to the relatively small size of the Selenipedium's flower.
Stems can reach up to 3 meters. The column has two fertiles anthers, one in each side and stamen located in the center that covers the high part with the column.The wild flower's Amazonian habitat is also under threat, so extinction is a risk for all species of Selenipedium.
Plants are very difficult to cultivate. They can be grown in warm temperatures and diffused bright light. Plants are cultivated in sand and tree fern fibers. Water with rainwater.
The name of the genus is derived from the Greek selen, which means "moon", and pedium, which means "slipper" (referring to the pouch).
The type species is Selenipedium chica
- Selenipedium aequinoctiale (The Equatorial occurring Selenipidum) is a terrestrial orchid found in Ecuador.
- Selenipedium chica
- Selenipedium isabelianum (Found in Brazil)
- Selenipedium palmifolium A dry land flower, its habitat is endangered by deforestation of the Amazon basin for agriculture.
- Selenipedium steyermarkii (Brazil, Venezuela)
- Selenipedium vanillocarpum is a Brazilian species adapted to a mountain habitat, a colony was rediscovered in 2001
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