Cypripedium debile

Miniature Ladyslipper

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Item #: 9312

Zones: 5a to 7b, at least

Dormancy: Winter, Fall

Height: 3" tall

Culture: Light Shade

Origin: Japan

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)

So, you think you're a good gardener? If you can grow the dwarf Cypripedium debile, welcome to an exclusive club. This Japanese native makes a tiny clump, composed of two 1.5" long glossy green leaves, topped in spring with a pendent stalk holding an equally teeny-tiny white flower, highlighted by light green sepals. In the garden, Cypripedium debile needs an organically rich, slightly moist, but well-drained soil, and please keep other more aggressive plants at bay. These are blooming-sized plants, but you can still fit a half dozen of 'em on a hamburger bun...just don't.


Lady slipper orchids are maintenance free in the garden once they are established in the correct growing conditions.

Growing Conditions:

Cypripedium prefer soils that are very well drained, and rich in compost. In containers, we like to add Permatill (popped slate) or a Pumice like product. Average moisture levels are great, but be certain soils do not remain waterlogged.

Lady slipper orchids are woodland plants, and most species do not have any sun tolerance. We have found that light, high shade is ideal.

Planting is critical, as roots must be spread horizontally just below the soil surface and not stuck deep in the ground as is the case with virtually all other plants. The growth bud should be planted just below the soil surface.

Natural Impacts:

Bees are the primary pollinators for lady slipper orchids, since orchids have a complex pollination mechanism built into the flowers.