Cambria - Orchids - Cultivation techniques and main species of the Cambria Orchid



Cultivation techniques






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Cambria, this beautiful evergreen orchid is very popular in our homes thanks to its ease of cultivation and the beauty of its blooms. In reality, however, Cambria orchids are a genus that does not exist as it is an intergeneric hybrid, that is, born from the crossing between different genera for commercial purposes.

They appeared for the first time in 1911 thanks to Mr. Charles Vuylsteke who from the cross between Odontoglossum crispum x Miltonia x Cochlioda noetzliana obtained what was initially called Vuylstekeara, in honor of its discoverer. About ten years later for the first time a hybrid appeared with the name Cambria, obtained by crossing the Vuylstekeara x Odontoglossum Clonius who was called Vuylstekeara Cambria Plush which at the time became very famous.

Around the sixties Cambria "fever" begins thanks to the fact that the Vuylstekeara Cambria Plush received an award such as FCC / RHS / AOS meaning that it was awarded both by the Royal Horticultural Society that from American Orchid Society (you see: Prizes awarded to orchids) .

From that moment there was a real rush to create more and more spectacular hybrids that would respond to the increasing demands for an orchid that is easy to breed; with spectacular, long-lasting and generous blooms. The new hybrids that were gradually obtained were registered and placed on the market with great success, so much so that today they are very widespread and it is for this reason that we consider it important to dedicate an article to these beautiful orchids even if they do not have the "honor" of being gods. genres in their own right.

Today there are many orchids on the market with the name Cambria, even if they have nothing to do with the original Cambria as their ancestors are often very distant and have very varied and complex ancestors.

For example plants are commonly sold as Cambria which are actually:

  • the Burrageara: Cochlioda x Miltonia x Odontoglossum x Oncidium;
  • the Wilsonara: Odontoglossum x Cochlioda x Oncidium;
  • the Beallara: Brassia x Cochlioda x Miltonia x Odontoglossum.

In any case, the indications that we will provide in this article on cultivation techniques refer to Vuylstekeara Cambria Plush even if, if you can find out which are the progenitors of your Cambria, by integrating the following indications with the technical specifications of the individual genera, it is possible, without much difficulty, to understand how to best breed your orchid.

Cambria is a plant provided with pseudobulbs mostly elongated, large enough from which the leaves develop.

The flowers are carried by flower stems that arise from the base of the pseudobulbs and each can carry three to seven flowers.

The colors of the flowers of these orchids tend to be dark red, variously streaked with white.

A peculiarity is that after flowering begins the formation of a new pseudobulb, a very important aspect to take into consideration to establish the optimal time for repotting.


Cambria do not require particular temperatures: 10 - 15 ° C during the night and 20 - 25 ° C during the day.

They bear even higher temperatures for a short period as long as they are accompanied by excellent environmental humidity and good air circulation. In any case, it is preferable to always ensure good air exchange with good ventilation, paying attention to air currents.

(For more information on the temperature and ventilation of the orchid see the article: Orchid temperature and ventilation).


Cambria are hybrids that do not like too bright light and certainly never direct sun. The light intensity should be around 12,000 - 15,000 lux.

In any case, if you can't regulate yourself, look at the color of the leaves, the plant itself will tell you if the amount of light it receives is optimal or not: if the leaves take on a reddish color it means that there is too much light, if instead their color is very dark green, then it means that the light is insufficient.

(For more clarification on orchid light see the article: Light needs of orchids).


Cambria do not like dry environments so much that the substrate must always remain moderately humid. The frequency varies according to the temperature and humidity of the environment. With average temperatures, once a week is more than enough.

The Cambria orchid loves to have a humid microclimate around it therefore it is necessary to spray the leaves regularly, even twice a day during the hottest periods and to place the plant on a saucer where there will be expanded clay (or other inert material) in which you will leave some water which evaporates with the heat and guarantees a certain humidity. Care must be taken that the bottom of the pot does not come into contact with water as otherwise an asphyxiated environment would be created at the level of the root system which is absolutely unsuitable for the plant.

Keep in mind that its progenitors, Odontoglossum and Miltonia like humidity around 60-70%.

(For more information on orchid watering see the article: Watering and humidity of orchids).


Cambria must be fertilized regularly and on average every three weeks using equally balanced fertilizers in nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) therefore using the formula 20:20:20 that is to say: 20 parts of nitrogen, 20 parts of phosphorus (P) and 20 parts of potassium (K) and as a dose 0.5 g per liter of water if inert substrates are used, i.e. they do not provide any nutritional elements (in this regard see the entry:Type of substrate and repotting of orchids). The dose will need to be decreased if a non-inert substrate is used.

The fertilizations are carried out after having moistened the substrate well to avoid an excessive salt concentration.

(For more information on orchid fertilization you can consult the article: Fertilization of orchids).


Cambria it is repotted at least every two years and the ideal period is when the orchid has emitted the new pseudobulb and has reached a size of at least 4-5 cm with evident roots.

Preliminary operations for repotting are very important for the success of the operation and consist of:
  • wet the substrate well so that the roots are more elastic and therefore there is less risk of breakage;
  • from the roots all the old substrate must be completely eliminated;
  • any parts of dead or damaged roots must be cut at least one centimeter above the damaged part with clean and disinfected scissors, possibly with flame or with alcohol or bleach;
  • the cut surface should be dusted with a broad spectrum fungicide powder to avoid the onset of fungal diseases.

The type of soil that you can use is made up of well-chopped pine bark mixed with a little sphagnum peat and agri-perlite. The material that will be used for repotting must be previously left to soak in water in order to eliminate dust, impurities and to hydrate it.

After repotting, if you have cut parts of the root, wait about seven days before watering to give the wounds time to heal. After that, resume watering in moderation and only when you realize that the roots have recovered, insinuating themselves into the substrate, resume normal cultivation treatments.

For the type of container choose the one you prefer but not too big compared to the plant as the substrate would remain humid for too long, creating an unsuitable environment for the plant to survive. Also make sure that it has numerous drainage holes both laterally and on the bottom in order to ensure perfect drainage of the irrigation water and that they can guarantee good air circulation at the level of the root system.

Remember to wash and disinfect the jar thoroughly before using it and your hands should also be clean if you do not use gloves.

(For more information on the type of soil and repotting of orchids you can consult the article: Type of substrate and repotting of orchids).


Cambria can bloom either in spring or autumn depending on environmental conditions.

The inflorescences sprout from the base of the new pseudobulbs and lead from 3-7 flowers.

After the flowers have wilted, the flower stem can be cut off at the base as it will not bloom again.

After flowering the plant will begin to develop new pseudobulbs.

Regarding the fact of making them undergo a slight temperature change to stimulate the flowering of Cambria there are different schools of thought: there are those who argue that after flowering and after the new pseubobulbs have developed, maintain a temperature of 16-17 ° C. , stimulates the plant to bloom again. Personally, you do not share this school of thought as Cambria are such generous plants that, if normal crop care is optimal, it does not need any stimulus to flourish.


Regarding the diseases of the Cambria orchid, see the chapter: Diseases and care of orchids.


If you are a novice and have never raised an orchid, you can start with Cambria as it is easily adaptable and not difficult to grow, it also blooms easily and the flowers remain in bloom for up to two months if the environment is not too hot and dry. for the plant.


You see: Orchids - The language of flowers and plants.

Video: Oncidium Orchid Varieties

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