Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Laelia anceps Lindl.

Frost-tender epiphytic orchid with ovate pseudobulbs with 1 or 2 lance-shaped leaves, to 15cm long, and racemes, to 60cm long, of up to 5 white to light pink flowers, to 6cm across, usually with deeper coloured lips and yellow, purple-veined throats, in winter.  To 60cm.  There are many named colour varieties.  [RHSE, Pridgeon, Hortus, Jennings].

Horticultural & Botanical History

Imported from Mexico by Loddiges’ nursery and first flowered in 1834.  [MB p.73/1837].  It was also collected by Parkinson at about this time and sent to Woburn Abbey.  ‘This is one of those beautiful purplish rose-coloured flowers, to which it is impossible for our artificial colours to do justice.  The pseudo-bulbs were sent by Mr. Parkinson from Mexico to his Grace the late Duke of Bedford at Woburn Abbey, where they flower in great perfection and where there is, during the winter season, a constant succession of blossoms of this and of the allied species, also sent by Mr. Parkinson.  It is, I believe, known that in two of the Orchideous houses at Woburn the plants are cultivated in moss, upon branches of trees placed against the sides of the building, and nothing can well exceed the vigour and beauty of the specimens.’  [BM t.3804/1840].  Flore des Serres figured the variety Barkeriana, with pink flowers, shading to white at the base of the petals.  [FS f.1100/1856].

History at Camden Park

Listed in the 1850 and 1857 catalogues [O.36/1850].  Probably obtained from Loddiges’ nursery, from which it was requested on 1st February, 1849, the first record.  [MP A2933-1, p.185].


Published Jan 26, 2010 - 02:32 PM | Last updated Jan 26, 2010 - 02:38 PM

Figured are lance-shaped leaf and pink flowers with darker, yellow-throated labellum.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.3804, 1840.

Laelia anceps Lind. | BM t.3804/1840 | BHL

Family Orchidaceae
Region of origin


Common Name
Name in the Camden Park Record

Laelia anceps 

Confidence level high