Pterygodium is a relative small genus of terrestrial orchids represented by about 17-20 species all but one native to South Africa and one in Tanzania.

The plants are terrestrials and all but one grow up to 50 cm tall - P. magnum grows allegedly up to 150 cm.

The underground root tubers are small in size.

Pterygodium spp grow in a variety of different habitats, forming small to large colonies and although some species are very abundant and easy to find, others are found only in isolated pales and are rare.

Most plants grow during the winter months and are dormant in summer. Life begins in late summer.

The leaves are “lanceolate” and develop all along the stem.

The inflorescence is terminal. Flowering is occurring from early spring to summer. The small to medium size blooms are yellow, green, white or purple and some have an unpleasant odour. Some species allegedly flower mainly after a bush fire.

Prerygodium plants are difficult to obtain.

In my opinion (I never had problems), Pterygodium orchids are easy to grow. A good terrestrial soil (potting mix) helps the plants to produce strong flowers; however, poor soils and lack of light will slow down the development of the plant and may prevent it from flowering.

A good sunny position and regular watering during the growing period are essential.

During dormancy, the plants must remain dry.

The plants are frost hardy up to -4°C.

Normally, plants produce three or more tubers and form dense colonies.

It is always wise to read as much as you can and improve your knowledge, before you buy any plants.