jackii & hiepii per Averyanov

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Ernie

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Leonid Averyanov spoke at the Paph Forum in DC on Saturday (Feb 16 2008). His presentation was great and covered a lot of the info in his Viet-Paphs book and recent articles in Orchids (or was it O Digest?) on villosum and callosum. Anyway, I specifically asked him about how growers have been able to induce the hiepii phenotype (how it looks- narrow segments, hooked pouch, etc) in jackii by severe abuse (ie poor culture) and he said he feels hiepii is a good taxon, BUT that he's only seen six specimens and that in culture, they do very poorly and always die. Hmmm, sounds like that supports the pissed off jackii theory??? He noted that hiepii have distinct leaves with a very pale, almost white background with dark tesselation, but one can wash out parvi leaves by growing them bright and dry (I've done it).

-Ernie
 

Leo Schordje

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Hmmmm. Leonid Averyanov is a scientist I respect. I wish he could visit (more correctly find and visit) the site that hiepii was reported to come from and document what he finds there. To me 6 plants and never seen again does not make for a valid species. The longer we go with no hiepii being found again in the wild and none being flowered under good cultural conditions in captivity - the more I am of the belief it is an artifact of bad cultural practices. - Leo
 

Hien

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I wish to hear Sanderianum's opinion on these two species. Since he has much more knowledge about these plants than almost all of us His opinion may carry a lot of weight.
 
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Roth

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Thanks a lot Hien. Actually, I have learned a lot being on "ground 0" here.

For hiepii, there are many plants sold under that name in Viet Nam and abroad. They are simply different populations of jackii. I will post pictures.

I think that hiepii could be an abnormal plant of one of few survivors from the massive genocide of wild plants that occurs daily in Asia.

There are many, many plants collected daily all around the world. The collectors ( and the sellers) usually have no knowledge about how to treat the plants, store them, or whatever. Most of the time, they take a rice bag, go after rain (the soil is wet, so the plants can be removed easily), fill the bag with wet plants packed like crazy, soil and all. They store the bag for 1-2 days or more, and move to the major cities. With some luck the plants are unpacked at that time, sometimes they are left in the bags. Anyway, they will end up in a kind of dirt mix, where many previous plants died before. The survival rate is low, and I think many species or types disappear like that before the outer world know about them.

I have seen in Indonesia a plant that was offered by Kolopaking as "kolopakingii like with mottled leaves". The plants were definitely something different, looking a bit like huge Orchilla plants for the tesselation, but all with bacterial rot in the rhizome. I do not know of any surviving plants, except one seedling sized one in Singapore that struggle to thrive.

In Viet Nam, Hai Tam Dao (Paphiopedilum gratrixianum var. daoense) has been collected out in january, within days, and most of the plants died, the collectors did not take the roots, they cut them off. I have been lucky enough to see them in the wild, and there was a lot of variations in the plants. We will know that variety by only some plants, and according to the collectors there were a lot of variation in the flower color and shape. P.affine-like, from Nha Trang ( it was looking like the "european gratrixianum" with erect leaves heavily marked with purple dots at the base, but huge plants, with leaves up to 60 cm, erect) is extinct as well. The collectors did not store the plants properly, and wiped out 2 years ago the entire population. They wanted a high price, so only very few have been exported, those are the survivors. The bulk died. I have not yet seen a bloom from that type.

In the natural hybrids, I have seen plants of hangianum x malipoense and emersonii x malipoense, few times. The plants were in awful condition, with crazy prices of several hundreds dollars. There are many xGlanzii available, at the rate of 5-10 a month. The blooms are different from micranthum x emersonii artificial hybrid, and there is only one man to supply those. I have heard at first that it was a "new species" about 3 years ago. That man had suddenly 20 plants available. Now he is more clever, and sell the plants one by one, every couple of days. I think that there is an unknown to science colony of that natural hybrid, within 20 km from Ha Giang. The same stands true for jackii var. album, there is a quite large colony of it, several thousands plants.

Four years ago, one man in Da Lat had more than 80 wild collected delenatii album suddenly. I have seen them, and shortly thereafter, he understood that he could break the market, so he hide, and make the plants available one by one. Same for the delenatii var. vinicolor, there is one plant for sale at the same man place all the time. If someone buy it, few days later there is another one, in the 500US$ price range. I went once to get one plant, then I went the next month, he had another one. So far he is the only source for that plant, and he alawys have some available non stop for the last 7 years.

The same stands true for helenae album in Viet Nam, and esquirolei album and armeniacum album in China. I suspect that there are a lot of strange things like that that we are not aware of, colonies of with many albinos, and colonies with odd flowers. We are made aware of, as westeners, only one plant by one plant, so the market is not "broken"...

For hiepii, it could be a plant of unknown origin. I heard of 3 plants in bloom sold, in the 200-300$ range. I got some as well, unbloomed, and some have very horizontal petals... more like a jackii with horizontal petals than the original hiepii.

Most of the orchids in Viet Nam are known only from the resellers, who buy from each other like crazy, who in turn buy from any people that has plants to sell, Vietnamese, Laotian, unknown, or whatever. Therefore it is highly difficult, if not impossible, to assess properly the source of plants. The plant was not for sure a second season blooming from cultivation, are the orchid sellers here are totally unable to grow the plants. If a plant bloom in North Viet Nam in a professionnal grower place, it has to be on a wild growth that initiated the bloom in the wild. Reblooming a plant is absolutely out of question for them.

Dr. Averyanov described Dendrobium vietnamense, which is definitely a laotian plant, and I know he had a close friend in Ha Noi that he trusted completely and definitely for the source of the plants he described, and many pictures he used.

Unfortunately that friend proved to be not too reliable, and was buying the pictures and plants from many, many sources. Some pictures are even fake ones, made with collected plants put back in a forest ( not very far from Ha Noi, in Ba Vi). I discussed with a collector who was instructed to do so for 2 paph species. Nice pictures, but they do not match the plant habitat.

On the other side, there are many oddities in the plants available commercially in Viet Nam. I bought some "micranthum" leftover from the Têt, in very low bud.

Some will be micranthum, but there is an armeniacum mixed in. The flower stem and bud are armeniacum, the plant is a beautiful example of micranthum plant.

I have seen 3 times such plants, one in AnTec, one in Paphanatics, and a third one in the Orchid Zone. Micranthum plant with armeniacum flowers. I went back to discuss with the seller, the plants come from China, not Viet Nam. Actually, there are many reports of armeniacum in Viet Nam, but they come from a trade with Yunnan dealers, hangianum against armeniacum. There was apparently a population of armeniacum in Viet Nam at a time, according to a collector. There are many species in Laos, including micranthum, malipoense, and emersonii but nowhere people mention anything about that. The flowers are different, slightly to heavily. Sometimes, when the prices are right, or the mountains are out of reach ( the trail to go to see gratrixianum var. daoense fell down in october last year, I went there, and it was extremely dangerous, with a bamboo taped to the side of the mountain, at 400m above the ground), the vietnamese sellers will order a batch from Laos, or wherever. They will never acknowledge that those plants are not vietnamese, and they will build up a nice story about the vietnamese place they are coming from...

Many plants from big batches actually die before blooming. I would say that over a big box of plants, the survivors that bloom in Viet Nam are around 5-10 out of 1000 plants. Cultivation quality is very, very poor, so the fact that the plants die after bloom as Averyanov mentions does not make completely impossible that a complete colony has been wiped out and only few crappy plants could survive and bloom. It is impossible to tell for sure at present time, and it is even impossible to tell if those plants are from Viet Nam, or an accidental trade with a native from Laos, China or wherever.

I will say something else. There are some species that have never, ever, been seen really in the wild by foreigners or scientists. This include Viet Nam. As an example, there is absolutely, totally, and definitely NO Dendrobium trantuanii anywhere in Viet Nam. I discussed with the "discoverer", and he told me he bought plants from the minorities close to the Laos border. I tried to find out if there are any in Viet Nam, and the minorities explained to me that those plants actually were coming from a vietnamese whose second wife is Laotian. He cross the border by motorbike to a small village, 200 km from the Viet Nam border, where there is a huge market of wild collected plants.

Many Thai growers go to this market every month or every other month.

Some Chineses are there as well, and Burmese are known to bring some bags here and there. They exchange a lot of plants from their own home countries.

Therefore it is IMPOSSIBLE to know if plants coming from this market are Vietnamese, Chinese, Burmese or Laotian. They buy and sell like crazy. That's where dendrobium vietnamense appeared, and I happened to found plants close to the lao/burma/china border. Nothing to do with Viet Nam at any cost!

One one more note, I have been very surprised and sad to learn today that paphiopedilum coccineum is nearly extinct. It was a popular plant for pot plant, but is easily prone to bacterial rot after collection ( they pack the plants in big bags, wet, and the leaves are frequently heavily broken). Suddenly the plants are unavailable, the minorities said there were still plenty, but in fact they turn out to be henryanums...
 

Gcroz

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Sanderianum: I really enjoyed reading your post! I have spent time in both Thailand and Laos and remember the orchids being sold there. I can only guess, and have had those guesses concurred with by your post, what Viet Nam markets are like.

I'm curious about what your opinion on CITES is? Should Vietnamese orchids be legal to see and propogate here in the US? I ask this without regard to the USDA, which oddly enough can't get bad meat off the shelves in time but if you have a rare orchid they send in the SWAT in seconds.

Anyhow, great post! I'm fascinated by all this...
 
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C

cwt

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Sanderianum, this is very interesting bbut shocking, although not altogether the whole picture. Ive met Leonid on his last visit to our country, and spend many hours listening to the problems especially in Viet-Nam. It is actually much worse , because it is not only the orchids, but things like cycads as well. The two of us share a love for them, and what he told me about the different species and their smugling, is hairraising. Discovered today, gone tomarrow.Thanks for such an informative post.
Charles
 

Roth

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Sanderianum, this is very interesting bbut shocking, although not altogether the whole picture. Ive met Leonid on his last visit to our country
things like cycads as well.
Surprisingly, there is not that much smuggling of cycads, except hoabinensis, and some forms/varieties of revoluta. Most of the cycads come from Laos, at least the wild ones available in Thailand. The other problem is that taxonomist always, and without any exception that I know of, need commercial wild collectors to access the plants, or see them in the wild, so sometimes they cannot really give the true picture publicly.

I can only guess, and have had those guesses concurred with by your post, what Viet Nam markets are like.

I'm curious about what your opinion on CITES is? Should Vietnamese orchids be legal to see and propogate here in the US?
As for CITES, I think it raised the price of many paph species so that they reached prices that made many people interested in their trade. Many species are not showy "that much". I know that many baccanum have been collected, but there are not that many hobbyists interested in, as an example. Because of the CITES, many people speculated on paphs, like you buy bonds on the stock market.

There is a real problem of collection (for sure, all blooming size mastersianum commercially available, and nearly all emersonii, are wild collected, and 1 plant sold is 1 plant removed from the wild), but CITES will not solve it, as the target are not the proper ones. The pot plant hangianum that go to China are fascinating, but I am not even sure people know that it is paph hangianum. vietnamense has been used the same way.

The other problems is the lack of experts, real ones. A fresh paph bellatulum, it is impossible to miss it. A "precultivated" bellatulum, only knowledgeable people can. And then, it is anyway very difficult to manage a real control.

For Vietnamese species on the US market, we know several things:

- AnTec wish of propagating helenae and vietnamense is a commercial "failure". Their invoices have been used just to launder much cheaper plants, so they did not gain the expected profit ( and maybe some losses actually).

I think a flask of vietnamense was around 200US$/20 plants? But at the same time, freshly wild collected vietnamense were available at US$5 from a chinese nursery. Many people bought 1 flask at 200US$, 200 plantes at 5$, and they got, courtesy of AnTec, 220 blooming size plants 2 years later, with proper permit, for 1200US$. I think, but I do not know the story behind AnTec and that the USFWS, that AnTec has been partially cheated with their legal propagation efforts, as AnTec by itself is unable to check the legality and authenticity of every vietnamense in the USA. DNA tests are costly, so costly that no one is scared to get their vietnamense tested. And anyway, those should have been checked a couple of years ago. There are F2 flasks available in the USA, AnTec legal parents, mixed parents, and illegal parents. Go try to sort them out now by DNA testing. We speak about a budget of several dozen thousands US$ to ensure that all the vietnamense and their hybrids are originating from the "legal" plants.

- If the prices drop down through massive propagation, it will be possible to
control the trade of illegal plants. If helenae was available at US$10-15/blooming size plant in the USA, legally, there would be no profit for people to smuggle illegal plants.

On a very personnal note, I think, regarding some vietnamese lawfirms claims against the US Government that they are enormous bullshit. Hai Helen ( Paph. helenae) is available on every street market in Viet Nam, everyone see them, buy them, sell them. They are smuggled through China to all around the world.

I would compare it to a book seller whose stock is entirely stolen, but will only fill a complain against someone who made a photocopy. It is ridiculous. From the time a country accept that their plants are collected by the masses, there is no more legitimacy to restrain their propagation. And the prices of collected are so low that no one can claim that it is a huge loss of money for their home country. Two years ago, helenae were sold for 1$/50 growths ( 50 growths, not counting the previously bloomed ones, or the small new ones), so it makes each "individual" plant at about 0.04$ for nice clumps. It is impossible, when such practices are allowed, to pretend that artificial propagation in the USA will be detrimental to the Governement income.
 

Sangii

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For hiepii, it could be a plant of unknown origin. I heard of 3 plants in bloom sold, in the 200-300$ range. I got some as well, unbloomed, and some have very horizontal petals... more like a jackii with horizontal petals than the original hiepii.
something like that ?



(flower also much smaller than other jackiis)
 
E

Ernie

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Lilo,

Hiepii supposedly has this really weird, hooked pouch. Sort of like some fairrieanum hybrids get.

-Ernie
 
E

Ernie

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For hiepii, it could be a plant of unknown origin. I heard of 3 plants in bloom sold, in the 200-300$ range. I got some as well, unbloomed, and some have very horizontal petals... ...
"I got some as well..." ??? Art prop or wild plants?

-Ernie
 

Sangii

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Lilo,

Hiepii supposedly has this really weird, hooked pouch. Sort of like some fairrieanum hybrids get.

-Ernie
yep I know that Ernie but since I have never seen a hiepii in person, if any exists, I was refering to what Sanderianum was saying about jackiis with horizontal petals

Sanderianum, in your idea, what are those jackiis ? a special colony somewhere ? some sort of var. ?

when I saw this flower my first idea was :( what is wrong with this jackii :confused: then I thought that it would be cool to see if , crossed to malipo for instance it would yield to malipos with straight petals . Any idea ? (the downsize being also the very small size of the flower on this one)
 
E

Ernie

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Exactly :D

Wild plants, I am in Viet Nam, and they are sold really on the street.
So, I assume from your stance in previous posts, that you grow these plants and bloom them and then pollinate them in a personal effort of ex situ conservation. Right?

-Ernie
 

Hien

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yep I know that Ernie but since I have never seen a hiepii in person, if any exists, I was refering to what Sanderianum was saying about jackiis with horizontal petals

Sanderianum, in your idea, what are those jackiis ? a special colony somewhere ? some sort of var. ?

when I saw this flower my first idea was :( what is wrong with this jackii :confused: then I thought that it would be cool to see if , crossed to malipo for instance it would yield to malipos with straight petals . Any idea ? (the downsize being also the very small size of the flower on this one)
Sangii,
Please, self it or cross it with another similar straight horizontal petals jackie/hiepii(whatever this is). I am begging you. Don't cross it with a malipoense.
If it is pure, most of the seedlings will come out like itself, right.
 

Hien

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Exactly :D



Wild plants, I am in Viet Nam, and they are sold really on the street.
Maybe, with Sanderianum's effort on distilling the species back to their original description , one day, we could be the benificiaries of really "TRUE TO FORM" species that are exported directly from Vietnam. With proper labels as species, or as certain variation forms of the species.
Not those hybrid imposters that we treasuring right now as species.
 

Roth

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So, I assume from your stance in previous posts, that you grow these plants and bloom them and then pollinate them in a personal effort of ex situ conservation. Right?

-Ernie
Correct, as I have a tissue culture lab here, sustained by pot-plant production. Nowadays paphs are more of a hobby to me, but with some latter developments, there is good hope proper flask production can be developed here, with the proper paperwork.
 
E

Ernie

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Correct, as I have a tissue culture lab here, sustained by pot-plant production. Nowadays paphs are more of a hobby to me, but with some latter developments, there is good hope proper flask production can be developed here, with the proper paperwork.
Good job! Thank you for your efforts!

-Ernie
 

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