Huge, huge Vietnamese pleione

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Roth

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I wanted to share those pictures, taken a few hours ago.

There were several pots of pleione intended for house decoration :



Please note the awful taste, and the fact that they are quick to sell because it is a pot with orchids, lavender color. That they are pleione is not of any concern... It is the strange "pleione from Viet Nam". As usual with many orchids species, the Vietnamese strains are much better than the Chinese ones ( think emersonii vs. hounglanae).

It is interesting to see a flower in detail :





Note the golden yellow splash on the lip, and the variability...

about the size... well...




Apparently 1 petal is 8 cm, makes something around 14-15 cm if the flowers are in good condition :D:D:rollhappy::rollhappy::D:D

Vietnam is the home to Pleione maculata, limprichtii, aurita, forrestii, bulbocodioides, yunnanensis, grandiflora, xbarbareae, vietnamensis and a few other species. There is no accurate study of all the species. The same stands true for two obscure cypripedium, one from Fan Si Pan could well be either subtropicum or a related species...
 

Leo Schordje

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That Pleione looks incredible. Huge. Very nice. When the US & Vietnam get the CITES mess worked out, the Pleione would be a wonderful seller for export
 

Roth

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Hmm. Pleione hybrid.
Cannot be artificial hybrid anyway... The minorities collect them from Fan Si Pan area. There was a similar sized flower in february available, but all yellow, looked like a gigantic forrestii. They come direct in rice bags to the shops here, and the people pot them like the wonderful, beautiful display I show in my post.

Maximum I have seen on those flowers available at the market was 2 flowers, but there were flower stems from past year that undoubtly had 3 at least ( and 30-35cm tall when dry...). There are some pleione cultivars that can bear up to 4 flowers on a stem, I havesee pics of grandiflora and xConfusa like that ( on the forum related to www.pleione.info).

About cyp subtropicum like and the cypripedium lentiginosum-like ( and apparently the tibeticum), I showed to the collector of the pleione the book on cyps by Phil Cribb, and some internet pictures. The red tibeticum he said he has seen some, but very rare. The two-leafed cyp, he said he saw only the white flowered one with red spots, and he collected those out for a group of Japaneses, and then he recognized the mexican cyp.irapeanum as being from the area, with brown-red flowers. He said he has seen only a very few plants, they are around 50cm+, with several to many flowers, and the main problem is the access to the site. Apprently it grows in nearly full sun close to the top of the hills, in a kind of sand, and he told me that the rock is very brittle over there...

The Sa Pa and Lai Chau area are heavy exchange area between chineses and vietnameses traders, so it is not impossible that the original cyp subtropicum was coming from Viet Nam as well... One of the authors of the description has a relative who is the largest wild collected orchid dealer in China, and gets a lot of plants from Viet Nam, Burma and laos

http://www.backyardgardener.com/kaichen.html

Look at the email address of the owner
http://www.plantideas.com/kaichen03.htm

She was the daughter in law of the eponymous scientist...
 
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