The Maywa (Epidendrum jamiesonis) is considered the emblematic orchid of Quito because it supports extreme temperature variations. William Jameson discovered this Orchid in 1856. The Maywa lives on the soil until it will get aerial roots. Maywa’s means in Quichua “Purple.” The Maywa Orchid is part of the Epidendrum Species, and the name of the Epidendrum species in Quechua is “Winay wayn,” and means “Forever young.”
This orchid reproduces either by division from the mother plant or with seeds. Maywa defends itself from parasites through its aroma. The traditional Ecuadorian medicine uses Maywa flowers or its leaves in herbal tea. Locals are convinced of its healing properties for heart problems, nervous, stomachache and inflammation of the kidneys.
The Maywa grows in canyons and slopes. They bloom every month, and the flowers have about 2 cm in diameter. The orchid can grow to an altitude of about 2 meters.