Masdevallia is a large, tropical, Western Hemisphere genus of the orchid family (Orchidaceae). One way that these plants are classified is by the temperature range in which they thrive. The three main temperature categories are cool, intermediate and warm, with subcategories such as cool-to-intermediate and intermediate-to-warm.
Temperature ranges are further split into nighttime and daytime ranges. Warm species require a range of 60 to 65 degrees F (16 to 18 C) at night and 68 to 80 degrees F (20 to 27 C) during the day. When daytime temperatures are hotter, appropriately cool nighttime temperatures help to regulate heat stress.
If you live in a naturally moist, moderately warm environment, Masdevallias in the warm range may live outside in the shade of a lath house for much of the year. However, backup plans for cooling and humidifying are necessary for unexpected hot spells. Growing Masdevallias in areas with colder winters and hotter summers requires greenhouse and indoor environments with well-regulated growing conditions.
It may seem counter-intuitive, but one way to regulate heat stress is to minimize watering so roots stay drier. Damp roots can rot when temperatures are high. Other strategies for conquering heat stress include reducing light levels, misting plants and providing more air movement.
In this range, Flowers by the Sea primarily grows Masdevallias in the intermediate-to-warm range, which is why you'll find some of the plants listed here in our intermediate queue.
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