Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New Plant: Den. Mini (white with red lip)

Bit of a "NOID", a Dendrobium Mini (white with red lip):

Dendrobium NOID Mini (white with red lip)

Sadly, essentially being a NOID, I have little idea what this plant is in terms of it's hybrid ancestry. It's a nice, compact plant, which is a bonus at OOAB, where space is most certainly a limiting factor. I managed to find an extremely similar looking plant through Google, but again, it has cryptic naming which doesn't really elucidate much!

I quite like the way it superficially resembles a Phalaenopsis, but with pointed ends to the sepals (the top and lower left and right "petals"). There is a group of Dendrobium and hybrids called "phalaenopsis", and I guess this would probably fall in there somewhere.Continuing my investigations through Google suggests that most of these "phalaenopsis"-type Dedrobium have Dendrobium bigibbum in their ancestry. This orchid (or rather part of what taxonomists have decided is a cryptic species complex), commonly known as the Cooktown Orchid, is the emblem of the state of Queensland in Australia. The botanists have decided to split it off from the rest of the mega-genus, and it is currently known as Vappodes phalaenopsis. (A rather ugly genus name on my tongue, but YMMV!)

It looks like the buds open quite slowly, so with a profusion of them and with cold, metabolism-slowing winter weather on the way, I imagine it will be in bloom for a long while yet.

As with most Dendrobium, it likes bright light (a bright windowsill should keep it happy, and in warm areas, it would probably be quite happy outside under a tree during the summer, or possibly year round). This particular Dendrobium may not need a "rest" where water is mostly withheld during the winter, but we'll see with time! 

We spotted this plant at the local florist (Casablanca) just over a week ago and had to have it (we've been a bit busy of late with Senior Management's graduation and family being in town to blog much). There were several other tempting orchids there on the day (including a similar purple-ish Dendrobium "mini"), but we managed to restrain ourselves from taking more than one. The label in the pot is from Caro-Lin Orchids, based in P.E.

This orchid is now the 65th member of the OOAB "menagerie"...!