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Species Data

Species or Hybrid Nameleonis
Please see General Description.
Common Names

Kew lists 6 synonyms for this species: Aeranthes leonis; Mystacidium leonis; Macroplectrum leonis; Aeranthes leonii; Angraecum humboltii; Angraecum humblotii.

Common Name: The Lion\\'s Moustache Orchid.

Scented Yes
Growth TypeEpiphyte
Growth HabitErect habit, with the leaves growing alternately in a fan shape - similar to that of some vandas - but the alternation is close that the leaves almost appear to grow in pairs.
Temp RangeHot - over 70°F
HumidityHigh - 80% and above
OriginMadagascar and the Comoros Islands
Click on photo to zoom in
Angraecum leonis
CopyrightJustTropicals.com - 21/01/06
Angraecum leonis flower taken at RHS Wisley.
Submit Your Orchid Photo You can submit your own Angraecum leonis orchid picture here


Angraecum leonis is a compact, warm-growing Angraecum of which two forms are known. The smaller form comes from the northern part of Madagascar and grows to approx. 6 inches (15cms) tall with a leaf span of up to 8 inches (20cms). The other form, which can be up to twice as large, is found in the nearby Comoros Islands (East of the Northern tip of Madagascar). Both plants have thick, fleshy, stiff, folded leaves and beautifully night-scented flowers.

The flowers have a white lip, while the petals are white, sometimes tinted with green with lime green at their base. The flower has a long spur, which is typical of the genus. In the wild the plants are pollinated by moths.


The Madagascan form grows naturally in higher temperatures than that of the Comoros Islands form, and humidity varies similarly. That said, both plants like warm to hot temperatures during the growing period (up to around 85F for the Madagascan form), and slightly cooler in the winter. A dryer resting period should be provided over the winter, with sufficient watering and misting to prevent the leaves withering. Overwatering must be avoided or the roots will rot and the plant will die. It is important that the roots are dry before temperatures drop in the evenings, particularly in the winter. Good ventilation and air movement will aid in this and should be provided at all times.

Angraecums vary in their light requirements, but Angraecum leonis is one of the species that likes quite high light levels.

Other Info

NoteCultural information should only be used as a guide, and should be to be adapted to suit you. Your physical location; where you grow your plants, how much time you have to devote to their care, and many other factors, will need to be taken into account. Only then can you decide on the cultural methods that best suit you and your plants.
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