I'll never forget the time I saw my first Cypripedium japonicum orchid at the US National Arboretum. I had never seen anything quite this beautiful. The spectacular, heavily-pleated green leaves of Cypripedium japonicum resemble a Japanese hand fan opened horizontally atop a 6" tall stem. Held just above the foliage is a scrumptious pink ladyslipper-like flower. As you can imagine, the supply of these nursery-propagated plants is very limited. Cypripedium japonicum is not easy to grow and should only be tried by very serious gardeners and plant collectors. Plant in humus-rich soil and expect two years to re-establish well enough to flower consistently.