Discover the beauty of Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana, also known as the jewel orchid. Learn how to care for this unique houseplant, including light requirements, watering tips, and propagation methods. Enhance your indoor space with the captivating foliage of this stunning houseplant.


Are you looking for a unique and visually striking houseplant to add to your collection? Look no further than Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana, also known as the jewel orchid. This variety of Ludisia discolor is praised for its beautiful foliage rather than its flowers, making it a captivating addition to any indoor space. In this article, we will explore the characteristics, care tips, and propagation methods for Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana. Whether you’re a seasoned plant enthusiast or a beginner, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to successfully grow and care for this stunning houseplant.

Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana: A Unique Jewel Orchid

Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana is a terrestrial orchid that stands out for its dark velvety leaves with copper to red pinstripes. The contrasting colors create a visually striking appearance that adds a touch of elegance to any room. Unlike other orchids, Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana is primarily valued for its foliage rather than its blooms. This makes it an excellent choice for those who want a houseplant that provides year-round beauty.

Care Tips for Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana

To ensure the health and longevity of your Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana, it’s important to provide the right care. Here are some key tips to keep in mind:

  1. Light Requirements: Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana thrives in medium light levels and should be protected from direct sunlight. Place it in a spot where it can receive bright, indirect light to maintain its vibrant foliage.

  2. Soil: Jewel orchids like Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana grow best in regular potting soil rather than orchid potting bark. Create a potting mix that retains some moisture yet drains well to provide the ideal growing environment.

  3. Watering: Water your Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana when the top layer of soil dries out. Avoid overwatering or allowing the soil to become waterlogged, as this can lead to root rot. Adjust the watering frequency based on the season and humidity levels in your home.

  4. Temperature: Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana thrives at average room temperatures, ideally between 70°F and 80°F (21°C – 26°C). Cooler temperatures between 60°F and 70°F (16°C – 21°C) can encourage blooming in fall and winter. Protect the plant from frost as it cannot tolerate freezing temperatures.

  5. Humidity: This jewel orchid prefers moderately humid conditions, with air moisture levels between 50% and 60%. If the air in your home is dry, consider using a humidifier or placing a tray of water near the plant to increase humidity.

  6. Fertilizing: Feed your Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana regularly during the spring and summer using a balanced houseplant fertilizer or orchid feed diluted to half strength. This will provide the necessary nutrients for healthy growth and vibrant foliage.

  7. Pruning: Pruning is generally not necessary for Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana. However, you can trim off flower stalks if desired. If the plant becomes too large, you can divide the stems or roots to control its size.

  8. Pests and Diseases: Monitor your jewel orchid for common pests such as mealybugs and scale insects. If you notice any infestation, remove the pests by dabbing them with rubbing alcohol or using neem oil. Be mindful of excessive moisture and poor air circulation, as these conditions can lead to plant diseases like powdery mildew, root rot, and leaf spot.

Propagation Methods for Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana

There are two primary propagation methods for Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana: division propagation and seed propagation.

  1. Division Propagation: To propagate your Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana through division, carefully separate the plant into smaller sections. Each section should have healthy roots and stems. Plant these sections in separate pots with well-draining soil and treat them as individual plants.

  2. Seed Propagation: Propagating Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana from seeds requires patience and specific conditions. Sow the seeds in a suitable seed-starting mix and keep them warm and moist. It may take several months for the seeds to germinate. Once the seedlings have developed, transplant them into individual pots.


Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana, the jewel orchid, is a unique houseplant known for its exceptional foliage. Its dark velvety leaves with copper to red pinstripes make it a visually stunning addition to any indoor space. By following the care tips provided and selecting the appropriate propagation method, you can successfully grow and propagate Ludisia discolor var Dawsoniana. Incorporate this captivating houseplant into your collection, and enjoy the beauty it brings to your home.


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