Cypripedium japonicum title
     I continue to read that Cypripedium japonicum is difficult to grow. Thanks to several propagators for their feedback. Master propagator Bill Steele of Spangle Creek Labs in Minnesota reports japonicum's poor performance in his northern-tier gardens. Three gardens in more temperate locations report considerable success: I can personally vouch for are my own, those at the National Arboretum in Washington, DC, and an stunningly beautiful colony in Japan. These were overwhelmingly successful. Please contact me with your experiences:
Cyp. japonicum from the side
Cypripedium japonicum 'Sweet Lips'
Cypripedium japonicum has proven well suited to the Baltimore climate. It blooms reliably. The clone I have has not multiplied yet, probably because I am setting seed on it, but has grown in size and vigor each year.
     Cypripedium japonicum has the standard Cypripedium opening with guidance stripes, hairs, and windows.
pubescens split apart
japonicum front big
Cypripedium japonicum 'Sweet Lips' very close.
     My great thanks to SUN Haiqin of China for confirming that the pollinator of Cypripedium japonicum is indeed an as-yet-unidentified bumblebee! Does anyone else have more information, observations, or photographs?
Cypripedium japonicum flower from above lip split open
Other views of the Cypripedium japonicum flower.

Back to the main page.

Permission is granted to reproduce these pages for educational use in newsletters and programs.
Credit and reference must be given. For more information, contact Clark Riley,