P. lowii fma. semi-album - a keeper or to be returned?

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Dec 16, 2009
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"Help me if you can, I'm feeling down
And I do appreciate you being 'round
Help me get my feet back on the ground
Won't you please, please help me?"
('Help', The Beatles)

I bought this one as P. lowii fma. albinum (recte: fma. aureum).

As you can see from the pic, when it flowered it turned out, that there are some small spots of anthocyanin on the upper parts of the petals, i.e. the plant is only a semi-albinistic form. A little bit parallel to P. insigne fma. sanderianum vs. fma. sanderiae, it appears to me?

As the plant wasn't exactly inexpensive, I would like to hear from you guys and gals, whether this semi-aureum form is interesting? Or whether I should return/exchange the plant, as the seller by the way kindly has offered?

Looking foreward to hear your opinions/advice!

Kind regards,
Jens, i just can say, that if i were you i would send it to me, sure...


Well-Known Member
Jun 18, 2006
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It is really a wonderful clone, also when it is different from the typeclone without any red points.

In the description Phillip Cribb showed a picture of his plant and wrote in Orchid Review 98: 109; 1990
Paphiopedilum lowii var Aureum
P.J. Cribb describes for the first time
an extraordinary variety of slipper orchid from Borneo
On a recent trip to Borneo I visited the Forest Research Institute in Kuching and was asked by Miss Rena George, the forestry officer managing theit nursery: ‘Will you please identify a slipper orchid for us? It has pure yellow flowers.’ My immediate reaction was to ask if the orchid was from Thailand or China, but I was assured that it had been collected in Sarawak by Messrs Yii Puan Ching and Loi Shak Teck, forest research officers based in Kuching. Imagine my surprise when I saw the photographs of the plant, which had flowered in March 1989, to find that it was an albino variety of Paphiopedilum lowii and did indeed have beautiful primrose-yellow flowers with not a trace of brown or purple colouring on its sepals, petals and lip. It was found growing as an epiphyte in forest at about 1.000 m on a remote plateau area in the north of the country.
Albino varieties of Paphiopedilum species have been highly prized by generations of orchid growers. They are of interest both to those interested in species and to hybridisers, adding variety in a genus already diverse enough to satisfy all but the most pernickety. Indeed, one of my favourite orchids is the delicate albino variety of P. fairrieanum, while some of the most pupular hybrids, such as the ubiquitous P. Maudiae ‘The Queen’, have been bred from albino varieties of species.
Although albinos have now been found in many species and several have been successful propagated, few of these are of multiflowered species. An albino P. haynaldianum caused a sensation a few years ago and has been awarded recently by the Royal Horticultural Society. It differs from the Sarawak P. lowii, in being essentially green rather than yellow. Therefore, you can imagine my surprise at being shown the photographs of the beautiful slipper orchid in Kuching. The Forest Research Centre Nursery have a healthy growth of this plant in their collection and hope to self-pollinate it when it next flowers. It would be wonderful if this spectacular orchid could find its way into more cultivation.
Although only two plants of this albino were collected, and one of these was pressed. I consider it merits description as follows:
Paphiopedilum lowii var. aureum Cribb (im Original var. nov.) simile var. typ. sed floribus pallide aureis differt. Typus: Sarawak, 7th Division, Yii Puan Ching and Loi Shak Teck in LST 1354 (holo.K!).

I would like to thank Miss Rena George and Mr. Yii Puan Ching for their hospitality and for showing me this orchid. Mr. Yii supplied the photograph.


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    lowii aureum Slipper Orchids of Borneo.jpg
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