Small Professional profile :
Carlos Eduardo de Britto Pereira is a chemist engineer expert in analytical chemistry. Enthusiast about Oncidium, he has been studying the Brazilian species of this genus since long time ago. Sharing this time between his employment and his hobby, he visits, always he can, different habitats and herbariums in Brazil and abroad in order to clarify doubts about those species. He lives in Rio de Janeiro and has a small farm in mountainous region of the state of Rio de Janeiro where he keeps a very special kind of cultivation without using pots, substrate, watering and fertilizers.

  - How did you start to cultivate orchids? Which was the magic moment of attraction?

- I started growing orchids not intentionally. I had invited some people to go to my house and I needed plants to put in special places in a bookcase in my living room.

  -Where do you cultivate your plants?

- I grow some of my orchids in a balcony in my apartment in Botafogo (Rio de Janeiro City). This balcony faces to the west and has a good luminosity during the winter (when the plants need more luminosity), it is sunny from 8 o'clock until 4 o'clock in the afternoon. During the summer, it is more protected from the direct radiation and it has a great advantage of being place in a passage of wind, providing a very good ventilation, besides, it faces the Corcovado mountain which
  foothill has a big green area of wood.
However, I have a small farm in Nova Friburgo County (Rio de Janeiro State) where I cultivate the most part of my plants, at 900m altitude.
I cultivate on the trees, on the rocks, on ground, depending on the species. I don't fertilize neither water them. I let it in charge of the nature. It is Atlantic forest, it rains a lot. The ground is acid and similar to the ground of those regions of highland fields.
When I started planting orchids on the rock, I used cement and I learnt something. Plants such as Laelia rupicola and Bifrenaria grow very well but Oncidium plants hated it. I believe it is due to Ph of the cement. So I am changing everything and put them on the ground.
I also planted Scutaria irwiniana (rupicolous) but it is too recent so I don´t have an idea about how it will work.

Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. concolor

Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. longipes
- How many plants do you have?

- I don't know for sure. In my balcony, I have about 150 plants. In the small farm I have a great many plants. However I don't know the correct number.
Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. gardneri

  - Which orchids do you have more?

-In my apartment, the orchids which need warmer conditions, I have Laelia purpurata, Laelia tenebrosa, Laelia lobata, Laelia crispa Cattleya forbesii, Cattleya nobilior, Cattleya trianae, Cattleya percivaliana which bloomed last year for the first time after many years, Oncidium carthagenense, Oncidium lanceanum, Oncidium kramerianum, Oncidium macropetalum, Oncidium onustum. I also have some Catasetum species and Epidendrum purpureum, between others. There are some Dendrobium species such us farmeri, superbum, fimbriatum.

In Nova Friburgo, I have mainly Brazilian species of Oncidium, provided it does not come from Amazon region. I have species of the Crispa section such as Oncidium crispum, praetextum, forbesii, gardneri, curtum, zappii, species of other section such us Oncidium euxanthinum, dasytyle , concolor, praestans and polletianum (Hybrids of the crispa section) harrisonianum, pulvinatum, divaricatum, pumilum, loefgrenii (native), cruciatum (native), waluewa, pubes. spilopterum, montanum. Briefly, almost every thing since it is not rare. The only one rare I have is Oncidiium. aberrans. There are many species of Laelia rupícola on the rocks, Houlletia brocklehurstiana (native).

  Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. pulvinatum

  - Between yours, what is the favorite plant?

-I don't have any specific preference. My favorate genus is Oncidium, but I love Cattleya walkeriana, Laelia pumila, I like very much the species of rupicolous Laelia, Cyrtopodium, Encyclia, finally, I like orchids.

Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. maculosum
Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. praetextum
- How long do you spend taking care of your orchids, daily?

-I just spend about 10 minutes to water my plants.
And no more than twice a year, I apply Ricinus' bran (always in September)
Sometimes, I spent a few hours in repotting, fertilizing or in special treatments. I am talking about Rio because in my small farm, as I said, I don't water nor fertilize.

- Was there any inspiration or did someone inspire you to cultivate orchids?


- How long do you cultivate orchids?

-Eighteen years.

- Which are the climatic conditions found in your environments?

-In Rio de Janeiro city, the weather is warm and humid. In Nova Friburgo, situated in a mountainous region, the weather is also humid. The winter is cooler but not always dried, sometimes it is rainy. The summer is rainy.

Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. remotiflorum

  - Do you have a cultivation tip that you can share with us?

-In humid environments, orchids wild in very dry places, such us Cattleya nobilior, C. walkeriana and Oncidium macropetalum, must be supported in barks of trees to protect them from excessive watering.

- Is there a short or amusing story connected to orchids that you want to tell us?

-Once, I went to Orquidario Binto to buy specially some Oncidium plants. In that occasion, there was a very big plant of Laelia jongheana hanging in a column in one of its bigger greenhouses. It seemed to me as if the plant was asking me to buy it. Initially I ignored the call and followed my way. However, as it was a very strong call, it made me return and buy this very plant. Some months later it flowered, it was an alba variety.
  Foto: Coleção de Carlos Eduardo
O. kraenzlinianum

-As time goes by, the cultivate of orchids becomes almost a prison. Have you ever thought about giving up this cultivation?

-As any other thing, growing orchids becomes bondage only if people get stressed about it and I don't feel like this. I don't consider it either a constraint or an obligation. So my answer is no.

  - One said that orchidophilia is the soft manifestation of madness. Have you done any "orchidophilic" insanity?

-No. Perhaps when I started growing orchids I may have bought more pots than I should.

-Thank you.

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