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Thread: Unknow orchid

  1. #1
    For the love of Science! Dragoness's Avatar
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    Unknow orchid

    I have this orchid, with only very little history on it. I know it's a long shot, but I'm hoping someone here might be able to help ID it, even if only to pin a genus/group on it.

    It is at least 3 years old, as I have had it for that long. Potted in store-bought orchid substrate, in a 2 inch pot, sunk in damp LFS.

    It lives in an orchid terrarium with my Vanilla, a 3 Phals, and a Cattleya. That particular terrarium is only marginally warmer than room temp, and is well ventilated, but humid, and has Compact Fluorescent lighting. That seems to be where it thrives. It has lived in other terrariums, with less success. In the past year, (length of time it has been in that tank) it has put on lots of leaves, and new roots. It started with just 2-3 leaves, and no visible roots.

    I do not know how it was propagated. (Seed, division, culture, etc.)

    It originated in Hawaii (I do not know if it is native there, or was purchased at a nursery, but I suspect that latter, as it bears only passing resemblance to any of the 3 native Hawaiian orchids.) and was brought here by my grandmother about 4 years ago. I do not know if it was a seed or a young plant at that time, but she brought back dozens of them, and gave them to various family members. Only mine, and one in my brother's care have survived, and his is doing poorly.

    No blooms yet. Here it is. The 3 larger leaves on the left are this year's new growth, as are all visible roots. The 3 smaller leaves on the right (underneath the others) are what it came to me with.

    Any guesses?


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    theplantman's Avatar
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    Nepenthes newbie
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    I want to say some type of Sophronitis because of the long leaves and petioles, as well as the thick roots. However, I'm pretty much a novice when it comes to all the different types of orchids. Sedirea japonica is possible but I don't see the same leave structure.

    I would perhaps guess something related to Cattleyas, since they are very popular in Hawaii. Definitely not an Oncidium or any intergeneric, since they have thin roots.

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    For the love of Science! Dragoness's Avatar
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    My best guess was Cattleya Alliance, but are there mini Cattleyas? The longest leaf on this guy is under 2 inches. My other Catt has 4-5 inch leaves.

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    Plant Whisperer Bio's Avatar
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    Looks like a Cattleya of some sort. Given how many hybrids, known and unknown, are out there, you will probably never know for sure what it is.

  6. #6
    For the love of Science! Dragoness's Avatar
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    If I can narrow it down to a group or alliance, that is good enough to at least fine-tune the care. I'd love to see it bloom.

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    BS Bulldozer SubRosa's Avatar
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    There are way too many species and hybrids in the alliance to guess without seeing a pic of a bloom, and even that may not be definitive. Fwiw it looks very similar to my Laelia alaorii, which is a mini species.
    Judge not lest ye be judged creates a cesspool. Judge others and prepare to be judged by them.
    Just know when to keep the verdict to yourself.

  8. #8
    For the love of Science! Dragoness's Avatar
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    Maybe I'll get lucky and get a bloom this year. With all the new root and leaf growth, I can certainly hope, right?

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