Species Orchid, Ludisia, Jewel Orchid, Variegated Ludisia

Ludisia discolor

Family: Orchidaceae (or-kid-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ludisia (loo-DIS-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: discolor (DIS-kol-or) (Info)
Synonym:Goodyera discolor


Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Partial to Full Shade


Grown for foliage


Good Fall Color


Foliage Color:




18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Not Applicable

Where to Grow:

Suitable for growing in containers



Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

Flowers are fragrant

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Dothan, Alabama

Brea, California

Castro Valley, California

Bartow, Florida

Bradley, Florida

Brooksville, Florida

Eustis, Florida

Havana, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Homestead, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida

Lecanto, Florida

Ocala, Florida

Port Saint Lucie, Florida

Saint Petersburg, Florida

Sarasota, Florida

Tampa, Florida

Winter Springs, Florida

Madison, Georgia

Davenport, Iowa

Mount Sterling, Kentucky

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tupelo, Mississippi

West Orange, New Jersey

Cincinnati, Ohio

Bandera, Texas

Richmond, Texas

Roanoke, Texas

Puyallup, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 18, 2005, mkjones from Aurora, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

EASY orchid. =)


On Dec 20, 2004, hanna1 from Castro Valley, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

So far it has the prettiest leaves of all Orchid collection!


On Dec 16, 2003, Toxicodendron from Piedmont, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:

My Jewel Orchid always blooms in December and January. It is by far the most dependable and easy to grow orchid in my limited collection. Whenever it gets leggy, I cut off the tips and stick them back in the pot and they root without any special care like plastic bags, misting, etc. I use an orchid mix with a little soilless peat/perlite mix added to it. Unfortunately, the velvety texture of the leaves interferes with getting a clear picture of how beautiful they really are.


On Sep 22, 2003, jacobsons wrote:

My Ludisia Discolor is deep purple with white stripes and beautiful spikes of white tiny flowers, 10" to 15" long. It blooms in the winter. A beautiful specimen foliage plant. Easy to grow and propagate.

I have used the flowers for floral bouquets; they make excellent cut flowers and they last for about a month.


On Oct 9, 2001, Baa wrote:

Terrestrial, mound forming orchid from South East Asia.

Has broad, ovate, variable coloured but often dark green/burgandy, velvet leaves with conspicuous veining. Bears spikes of small, pure white, fragrant flowers.

Flowers when it wants to and for several months at a time.

There seems to be some debate of the ease of growing Ludisia, I personally have never found a plant which puts up with so much neglect. It will grow in practically any soil as long as its well drained and isn't standing in water but loves high humidity. It prefers deep shade and a large pot as it grows quite large.

The stems like to drape themselves over the pot edge and can be grown outside as ground cover in a frost free area.