Elythranthera Orchids may be rare, and almost never found in cultivation, however they are an attractive genus with colourful waxy flowers.
Elythranthera is a very small genus of only two species, these are terrestrial orchids sometimes called ‘Enamal Orchids’ for the appearance of the very glossy flowers. The star shaped flowers appear on tall stems, and both species are found in and around the Esperance region of Western Australia.
Only two species have been named, both from Western Australia.
- Elythranthera emarginata ( pink enamel orchid) – With a spotted underside to the petals while the top is a glossy pink. A few variations have been found including a white variety.
- Elythranthera brunonis (purple emanel orchid). – Similar spotted underside however with a mauve to purple colour.
Elythranthera x imtermedia is a natural hybrid.
With brightly coloured flowers to 5cm from September to November Elythranthera are a must for those looking at the wildflowers of Western Australia. If you are lucky you may find a large clump in full flower, more often they appear as solitary or in small groups.
Both species tend to grow on slopes, in very well drained soils. They sit amongst other plants and are often difficult to find.
NOT READILY AVAILABLE AT NURSERIES