Aroids and other genera in the Collection    Take the Tour Now?    Orchids

The Exotic Rainforest
Plants in the Exotic Rainforest Collection

Medinilla magnifica Lindl.

Medinilla magnficia Lindl., Malaysian Orchid, Photo Copyright Steve Lucas,

Medinilla magnifica Lindl.
Malaysian Orchid
Sometimes confused with Medinilla myriantha

I first saw this Medinilla magnifica "shrub" at Zone Ten Nursery in Homestead, FL in 1998.  This is one our friends Tom and Linda White grow regularly and almost always have available.  Zone Ten does not mail plants so if you want one get in the car.  It's worth the drive.  But their website is filled with useful information and a lot of plants to dream of owning.  Tom and Linda grow all sorts of unusual tropical plants and you'll need a truck to get everything home. 

Medinilla magnifica, Copyright 2005, Steve Lucas, www.ExoticRainforest.comThis plant can reach almost 2 meters (6 feet) tall in our collection and is considered by horticulturalists to be a "shrub".  A "shrub" is a horticultural rather than a botanical term.  Shrubs generally consist of woody plants different from a tree as they have multiple stems and a lower height, usually less than 6 meters (20 feet) in height.  However, growers in tropical climates report they often grow larger! 

Often found as an epiphytic form (growing on trees) in its native Philippines, Medinilla magnifica possesses deep green leaves that are thick, waxy, rich and very glossy.  Leaves reach about a foot long and have pale green veins.  Its small pink brachts (flowers) spring from "berries" that bear seeds and are produced throughout spring and summer in pendulous fashion.  (That means they hang down!)  The plant is an irregular bloomer and flower clusters may pop up at any time of the year or it may skip a year.   The "flowers" are actually pink bracts which are attached in clusters.  The plant likes shade and can be propagated from woody cuttings or seeds. 

There is some confusion on the internet regarding this plant.  Some websites claim Medinilla magnifica and Medinilla myriantha  are one and the same.  However, TROPICOS which is a service of the Missouri Botanical Garden, says they are independent species.  Another website claims the plant will die at temps below 17.75C (64 degrees F).  It is certainly a tropical and I don't suggest you subject it to cold temperatures but our atrium regularly gets down in the 12.75C range (mid 50's) during the winter.  We try to hold it at 12.75C (55 degrees) minimum and the plant has survived 6 winters with no sign of stress.  It appreciates well draining soil with regular watering.  Add lots of peat, Perlite, humus and mulch to the soil mixture.

Back to Plants in Collection