About Me (and This Blog)

challen y stanhopea

Passionate about orchids and the Dharma, I like to think of myself as a yogi wandering through a garden. Intermittently I’m a graphic designer, an editor, a translator, an English teacher, a Spanish teacher, a writer, a gardener, a photographer, a tour guide, and a student of life. Though I studied environmental science focused on ecology, in my heart I’m a botanist. I am also a lover of Guatemala and its forests – especially its epiphytes.

In “Green Flowers and Scented Leaves: A Bilingual Blog About Guatemalan Plants” I intend to showcase plants that grow in Guatemala, focusing greatly on native species and especially on our wild orchids. All text and photographs are my own.


Apasionado por las orquídeas y el Dharma, me gusta pensar que soy un yogi deambulando por un jardín. Intermitentemente soy diseñador gráfico, editor, traductor, profesor de inglés, profesor de español, escritor, jardinero, fotógrafo, guía de turismo, y un estudiante de la vida. Aunque estudié ciencias ambientales con un enfoque en ecología, soy botánico de corazón. También soy un amante de Guatemala, enamorado de sus bosques y sus epífitas.

En “Flores Verdes y Hojas Perfumadas: Un Blog Bilingüe Sobre Plantas Guatemaltecas” pretendo mostrar plantas que crecen en Guatemala, enfocándome mayormente en especies nativas, y especialmente en nuestras orquídeas silvestres. Todos los textos y fotografías son míos.



  1. Hi, I’m also an orchid lover……Being from Zacapa its hard for me to have some species, however I’m trying to adapt some of them like Oncidium, Encyclia, Dendrobium, Aspasia, Epidendrum, Gongora….just to name a few. If you ever come this way , please let me know, I will love to have you around!!

    Love your blog.


    • Thank you, Gladys! I’m glad you like it, and I will most certainly be in touch with you if I ever wonder around your hometown. It must be challenging to try to grow high-altitude species in such heat! You must be very good. =) Thanks for the comment; I really appreciate it.

  2. Gladys Aldana

    Hello Challen, chek your posts again looking for the Stanhopea, cause my is blooming!!! In December I found at the market a Lycaste skynneri among the “musgo” sellers, so far I´m doing ok new leaves start to show, really exciting about this one….

  3. Congratulations, Gladys! There’s nothing quite like Stanhopea season. So beautiful, so fragrant, but so fleeting! I wish they lasted longer. Good luck with your orchids! 😀

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