Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Species Orchid, Ground Orchid, Parana' Cyrtopodium
Cyrtopodium flavum

Family: Orchidaceae (or-kid-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Cyrtopodium (sir-toh-POH-dee-um) (Info)
Species: flavum (FLA-vum) (Info)

Synonym:Cyrtopodium paranaense
Synonym:Cyrtopodium polyphyllum
Synonym:Epidendrum polyphyllum

One member has or wants this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials
Cactus and Succulents

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

Unknown - Tell us

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade


Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow
Chartreuse (Yellow-Green)

Bloom Time:
Late Winter/Early Spring
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds
Flowers are good for cutting

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball
From seed; germinate in vitro in gelatin, agar or other medium

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

Click thumbnail
to view:

By Monocromatico
Thumbnail #1 of Cyrtopodium flavum by Monocromatico

By Monocromatico
Thumbnail #2 of Cyrtopodium flavum by Monocromatico

By Monocromatico
Thumbnail #3 of Cyrtopodium flavum by Monocromatico

By Monocromatico
Thumbnail #4 of Cyrtopodium flavum by Monocromatico

By Monocromatico
Thumbnail #5 of Cyrtopodium flavum by Monocromatico

By Monocromatico
Thumbnail #6 of Cyrtopodium flavum by Monocromatico


1 positive
No neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Negative asleeponthekeys On Apr 11, 2014, asleeponthekeys from Punta Gorda, FL wrote:

While Cyrtopodium punctatum is an endangered native species in South Florida, Cyrtopodium flavum is considered an invasive species. C punctatum is part of Fairchild Tropical Garden's Million Orchid Project to plant 1 million native orchids in public spaces of South Florida to re-establish them. C flavum, while pretty, has taken over prime habitat for C punctatum and using it in your landscape is discouraged.

Positive Monocromatico On Feb 8, 2004, Monocromatico from Rio de Janeiro
Brazil (Zone 11) wrote:

Cyrtopodium is a genus or predominantly terrestrial plants, occurring from southern USA to Argentina. Even though itīs an orchid, the pseudobulbs are thick and succulent, and sometimes these species are cultivated in xeric landscaping. Some species have medicinal properties.

C. paranaense is one of the most common orchids on the litoral or Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo states, in southeastern Brazil. It often form big communities in light shade, on the fertilized white sand under the shrubs.

It has a thick and tall pseudobulb, reaching up to 50 centimeters or more, in older plants. The leaves are pleated, bright green, and fall in the end of winter, when new buds start growing on the base of the plant. The roots are thick and expansive.

The inflorescence comes from the base too, developing fast. It can grow up to 1,5 meters, bearing dozens of medium sized flowers. These flowers are yellow, with irregular red spots on the lip, and chartreuse sepals (thereīs a variation on the flower colors). These flowers atract bees. In nature, this plant produces fruits regularly, with thousands of small seeds per fruit. Flowers start to come on spring and summer.

This plant can be cultivated on sand, or other well drained soil, with little organic matter and/or litter, regular watering, light shade or even full sun, and high temperatures. The air from the sea seems to do good to it.

I got this plant while the team of our lab was collecting plants on the Restinga for a floristic research. I planted it on sand, 7 years ago, and I can say itīs one of my most loyal plants, growing vigorously and blooming every year. I only have to take care of the aphids that hide on the base of the leaves.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Miami, Florida
Dickinson, Texas

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