Paphiopedilum tortipetalum

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Ayreon

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It was marked as tortipetalum, but I'm not sure if that's correct. Should it be bullenianum?

Anyway... I really love the colours of it but they were hard to show in the photo. I had hoped that it would open up a bit more.. maybe it will in a few days.. or next time it's blooming. We'll see..

Anyway, it's a keeper for sure.
 

myxodex

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I'm really excited to see these pics ... you have made my day !! beautiful !!
Ayreon, tortipetalum is not accepted as a separate species by all taxonomists.
Certainly Cribb sinks amabile, tortipetalum, johorense etc. all into bullenianum.
From pictures that I've seen, your plant looks like tortipetalum whether species, variety, forma whatever.
I really, really like this whole group. Your plant is very beautiful and certainly a keeper. I have recently acquired one of these to replace one I lost ... and it seems OK now after an unhappy start. Also love the leaves of this "species" ... the background colour on mine almost white ... looks very similar to yours. I got mine from a Danish nursery and wouldn't be surprised if they are sibs ... about the same size ... and I will be very happy if mine turns out like yours.
Thanks for posting,
Tim
 

Leo Schordje

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Lance,
where is tortipetalum suposed to originate from? vs celebesense?
how wide spread were either of these in the wild or are they single location narrow endemics?
or do we simply not know due to lack of good collection info?
Also, is bullenianum widespread or very local on Borneo?
 

Lance Birk

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Leo,

excuse my haste, but I don't have time to do back-up check right now....

Cribb says that P. bullenianum occurs from Ambon, way over near the western tip of New guinea, all the way west to Sumatra. I don't agree.

P. tortipetalum was described by Dr. Fowlie from plants coming from peninsular Malaysia.

P. bullenianum and P. volonteanum both come from Malaysian Borneo; the first from lowlands and the latter from higher elevs. I recall they are from Sarawak rather than from Sabah, but they may come from both.

P. celebesense occurs in south central Sulawesi, Fowlie and I described it in 1978.

To me there are consistant differences in each population, enough to separate them into their own species,....which most everyone can see when they are compared side-by-side.

LB
 

myxodex

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Your plant is a typical-looking P. celebesense.
I wish someone would tabulate the differences between all these bullenianum - related species, sub-species, varieties whatever because I find them really confusing ... and I really like them (including the related hookerae). As a hobbyist I don't really care what taxonomic sub-division they are given officially ... but I would like to be able to distinguish an amabile from a tortipetalum, from a celebesense, from a johorense ... from a robinsonii etc. without having to do a PhD first.

Or is Phillip Cribb actually right and that the variation between the individuals within these groupings is greater than the differences between them ... thus making any sub-classification inherently unstable and impractical. Still it would be nice to know what to expect when you buy one of these ... given that web pictures aren't all reliable.

Cheers,
Tim
 

Leo Schordje

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Hey Lance,
Thank you. I did not realize that celebesense and tortipetalum were so widely separated geographically. The distribution you describe certainly supports keeping all of them as separate species. Depending on who wins the lumper-splitter agruments I would like to see the names persist if not as species at least as named geographic segregates.
I still kick myself for passing on an opportunity to visit Kuching in 1994, the closest I have gotten since was the lookout point on Sentosa Island in 1996. You could see Sumatra to the west, and way off to the east in the distance just barely see Borneo & maybe Java on the distant horizon. (at least I thought the vague distant shadows were Borneo & Java, my host was pointing east & southeast). The smell of cardamon in the air was intoxicating. I need to make travel a priority again. The distance between Peninsular Malaysia and Sulawesi is huge.
Leo
 
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paphjoint

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You must really be in a haste :)

Its not P. celebesense but celebesensis according to your own book

Furthermore P. volonteanum is perhaps a specie or a variety of P. hookerae -- but it has not much to do with bullenianum or tortipetalum

From a commercial point of view there's of course a big interest in having so many differently defined species -- but imo they're all quite similar so P. Cribb was right in simplifying it down to one specie


Leo,

excuse my haste, but I don't have time to do back-up check right now....

Cribb says that P. bullenianum occurs from Ambon, way over near the western tip of New guinea, all the way west to Sumatra. I don't agree.

P. tortipetalum was described by Dr. Fowlie from plants coming from peninsular Malaysia.

P. bullenianum and P. volonteanum both come from Malaysian Borneo; the first from lowlands and the latter from higher elevs. I recall they are from Sarawak rather than from Sabah, but they may come from both.

P. celebesense occurs in south central Sulawesi, Fowlie and I described it in 1978.

To me there are consistant differences in each population, enough to separate them into their own species,....which most everyone can see when they are compared side-by-side.

LB
 

Lance Birk

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Leo and Myxodex,

In the 2nd edition of my paph book you can clearly see the differences between all these species. I show photos of each species and give habitat data and range for each one.

Taxonomists who lump species together are only expressing their own opinion, …nothing else. I think it does disservice to the entire field of botany when everyone else can see these differences, yet when one or two individuals tell us we are wrong. Doesn’t make sense to me.

From a work in progress:
“Furthermore, the concept of speciation needs to be straightforward. The idea of separating plants into specific categories, consistent with a number of constant and distinguishable similarities which they each share, is a long-established practice and has been a universally declared goal in botany. The process of separation is the result of the botanist’s increased clarity of the elements found to distinguish between different species. Both logic and stated declarations dictate that, if a group of similar-appearing species can be further separated into smaller groups, each with readily distinguishable, separate and consistent characteristics constant to their own kind, then it must be done. This defines the Test of Logic.” L.A.Birk,2007

Speaking of Web pictures…. There is no responsibility on the Internet. Anyone, regardless of their intellect or their knowledge, can post on chat sites like this one. Uninformed readers often accept as true, much of what they see and read on the ‘net.’ I see so many mis-identified photos and such bogus science and bad advice given on sites such as this one, that I seldom visit any.

An author of a book is a responsible person. He has done his research and he presents his facts for everyone to read. He signs his name to his book, and there it is, set in concrete, for everyone to see, forever! Quite different from the nameless posters on the Web.

I even read some idiot’s remark that, “Books are so yesterday.” Now that’s a statement from someone with a limited intellect, yet I’m afraid it’s what’s being taught in schools these days. Such a shame. While the Internet to me is like having the keys to the Library of Congress, one must have the basic knowledge to sort out truth from all the jetsam out there.


If you look at Fowlie’s P. tortipetalum, it looks much like P. bullenianum. In my opinion, it was simply a convoluted flower of that species and not a new sp.

Leo,

I’m with you my friend, I truly miss the old days of orchid collecting. It’s just too hard these days, to justify the great expense of time, money and energy to mount an expedition to some orchid habitat, only to take photographs of some species, new or old, you can’t identify because it isn’t in bloom. Such a shame!

Incidentally, a clarification of my last post which should have read:

P. bullenianum and P. volonteanum both come from Malaysian Borneo; the first from lowlands and the latter from higher elevs. I recall they are from Sarawak rather than from Sabah, but they may come from both.

This should have been the next sentence:
While P. volonteanum and P. hookerae are not included in the group with P. bullenianum types, they illustrate how different elevations and geographic locations can separate species.

Dr. Fowlie once told me that in his opinion, if every plant on earth had it's own name, there would be no confusion about identities. Some taxonomists take the opposite directions, but I side with those who can see the differences and want to name them separately. This prevents chaos.

Lance Birk
 

Rick Barry

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Lance,

I won't argue the validity of any described orchid species, simply because I am not truly competent to do so. As a hobbyist, I am happy to accept the consensus opinion of qualified taxonomists. Some of your comments, however, simply demand responses.

...it does disservice to the entire field of botany when everyone else can see these differences, yet when one or two individuals tell us we are wrong.
The question is whether observed differences fall within the normal range of variation in a given species, not whether the differences actually exist. Such differences can be verified through examination of the holotypes. If by 'everyone else' you mean the handful of other taxonomists qualified to pass judgment on the validity of any Paph species being described, they are free to offer differing opinions. If 'everyone else' is in agreement, then for most of us the debate can be considered over.

I see so many mis-identified photos and such bogus science and bad advice given on sites such as this one, that I seldom visit any.
I find that sites like this serve as a form of 'peer review', there being no shortage of participants willing to set the record straight. Post a photo of an undisputed but misidentified Paph species and see how long it takes before a correction is offered. Those of us possessing orchid libraries know that books and magazines are hardly proof against such mistakes.

An author of a book is a responsible person. He has done his research and he presents his facts for everyone to read.
A look at the non-fiction bestsellers for the last several years might suggest otherwise. Any fair evaluation of anyone's comments (upon any subject) must be based upon their own merit, and should be entirely independent of the mode of transmission. Simply putting words into a printed form adds nothing in terms of validity or authority. Anyone with a word processor and the cash can contract with a printer to have a book produced. Credibility is based upon content, not format.

He signs his name to his book, and there it is, set in concrete, for everyone to see, forever! Quite different from the nameless posters on the Web.
Even concrete occasionally proves defective, and must be replaced. Not all posters on the web are nameless, but if someone prefers a pseudonym, it shouldn't detract from the weight of their arguments.

...only to take photographs of some species, new or old, you can’t identify because it isn’t in bloom. Such a shame!
A shame would be to rip a plant out of its habitat and bloom it in some private collection on the slim chance that it might be a new species. Speaking for the few plants still surviving in the wild, it is fortunate that the 'Good Ol' Days' are past.

Dr. Fowlie once told me that in his opinion, if every plant on earth had it's own name, there would be no confusion about identities.
On the contrary, confusion would reign supreme, and communication on the subject of botany nearly impossible. I suspect you are paraphrasing here, but if it is a direct quote, I doubt if it is one Dr. Fowlie would like to be remembered by.

To offer photos or quotations from your own past or future publications as evidence supporting your argument appears to me to be a logical fallacy known as 'begging the question'.

Regards,
Rick Barry
 

Leo Schordje

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Thanks Lance for sharing your experience. You have visited more Paph habitats, and observed more Paph species in the wild than any other person, since the late Jack Fowlie. I'm fairly sure Phil Cribb is not as well traveled as you have been. Jack's series "Awash in the Bitter Sea" in the 1970's was a wonderful look at how Paphs grow in the wild. Your books have been a great insight also. Thanks
 
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Eric Muehlbauer

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Well, I have to agree that being printed in a book is no guarantee of accuracy. Just check the paph photos and identifications in the Encyclopedia of Orchids by Alec Prigeon....I doubt that the errors have ever been corrected. Take care, Eric
 
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