Definition of cattleya in US English:



  • A tropical American orchid with brightly colored showy flowers and thick leaves, typically growing as an epiphyte. It is a popular greenhouse plant, with many hybrids.

    Genus Cattleya, family Orchidaceae

    • ‘The Orchid House offers the visitors a captivating display of exotic blooms of cattleya, dendrobium, arachnis, oncidium, phalaenopsis, vandal and their hybrids.’
    • ‘S. cattleya is apparently capable of generating fluoroacetaldehyde in vivo from metabolic intermediates, presumably by reacting them with inorganic fluoride.’
    • ‘In fact today orchids like the phalaenopsis or cattleyas are very easy to grow.’
    • ‘There are many popular types of orchid, including cattleyas, dendrobiums, oncidiums and vandas.’
    • ‘The collection includes cattleyas (familiar corsage orchids); miltonias (pansy orchids), with teardrop patterns in the center of the flowers; phalaenopsis (moth orchids); and oncidiums (what florists call spray orchids).’


Early 19th century: modern Latin, named after William Cattley (died 1832), English patron of botany.