Within the genus Laelia, Section Hadrolaelia comprises some of the loveliest miniature Cattleya-type species; their flowers large and showy relative to their small plant size. Laelia pumila is the most representive of the group, and is found in several color forms; lavender (the most typical form), semi-alba, alba, coerulea, and delicata. Hadrolaelias have made major contributions to the development of hybrid mini-catts, and are recognized for producing specimens of high horticultural value.
The Hadrolaelias are
temperature-tolerant, epiphytic species from eastern Brazil; their blooming
season is mainly late summer and early fall. They are unusual in that the
inflorescence lacks a floral sheath; the buds emerge as the newest leaf-blade unfolds and flattens to produce one, or sometimes two, flowers per inflorescence.