Only this species belongs to the genus doritis, but it occurs in many varieties. It has flattened pseudobulbs, which produce some large fleshy leaves; starting from spring develops a long branched stem, which bears many flowers, from about ten to more than twenty, which open in succession; they are white, pink, red or lilac, with petals that open to the outside and showy labellum of bright color, often with patches of contrasting color, yellow or orange. Over the years they develop new shoots that give rise to new plants, forming dense colonies; flowering occurs in succession, and can last for weeks. If grown optimally, the doritis can flourish again in autumn, so it is possible to see flowering plants for most of the year. This species has long been used to create hybrids with phalaenopsis, obtaining the so-called Doritaenopsis, orchids highly appreciated by collectors for the ease of cultivation and the color of large flowers. Recall that, as for phalaenopsis, also the doritis produce new buds on the stem that carried the flowers, therefore it is not advisable to remove this stem after flowering.
As for the exposure, these beautiful plants prefer bright locations, but not directly exposed to sunlight that could damage the plant; seems to be able to adapt quickly enough to bright light, while they fear the shadow, which causes a poor flowering. They fear the cold and the winter minimum must not fall below 15-18 ° C.
Throughout the year it is good to regularly moisten the growing medium, avoiding to leave it dry for prolonged periods of time; they can withstand a few days of dry soil. Avoid growing doritis in too dry a climate, remembering to vaporize the foliage frequently, even daily if the season is very hot or if we grow them in a heated place.
To best cultivate our plants, it is advisable to assess which soil is most suitable for doritis. Each plant has special needs and adequate care and attention to the specific needs of each one will allow to obtain excellent results and a beautiful flowering. In this case, a soft, very well drained and light soil should be preferred; as in the case of many other orchids, also in this case a compound is used consisting of shredded barks, pieces of peat or vegetable fibers. These plants tend to grow over the years, so it is a good idea to repot them every 2-3 years.
The reproduction of the plant takes place by seed, but it is very difficult to obtain selected seeds of orchid and also to handle them, given the tiny dimensions; more often we proceed to propagation by removing the seedlings that develop laterally to the mother plant, and repoting them into a single container.
Doritis: Pests and diseases
As regards instead the attack of pests and the development of diseases, surely the main cause of lack of development or withering of the plant is the excess or lack of watering. Even the cultivation in too dry a place can cause difficulty in growing the plant. They can be attacked by cochineal and mites.