It’s the Chinese New Year! We can all legitimately wear red, the colour believed by the Chinese to bring luck and ward of evil spirits and bad fortunes, or, if one’s timing is so lucky, showcase a red orchid.

My Renantanda Christie Low is letting me do just that. Chucked along a concrete fence-wall, it threw a bunch of smashing red flowers just in time to usher in the Chinese New Year. This must be a good start to the year of the Monkey. Hmm… I wonder if the monkey’s mischief, intelligence and flair for problem solving will bring auspicious orchid times ahead. I’ll let the fun of monkey business unfold itself throughout the year.

Renantanda Christie Low – inflorescence

Renantanda Christie Low was formerly and more widely known as Kagawara Christie Low. It’s a hybrid between Renanthera Nancy Chandler and Vanda Memoria Choo Laikeun. Like its Renanthera parent, the inflorescence puts out side branches and gives quite a spectacular show of crimson red, large flowers.

I had one of these, it keikied and now, I have three. Renantanda Christie Low likes lots of water for its robust roots, doesn’t mind full strength fertiliser – or none at all if you forget – and can take quite a lot of sun for a strap leaved vandaceous orchid. Once established at a bright spot, it’s one of those leave-it-alone-and-it-will-bloom type of orchids.

There it is, growing along my wall-fence. The steel mesh by the way, is to deter cats. Doesn’t quite work, but anyway.