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The REAL P. philippinense from Palawan..in person

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Lance Birk

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Every so often the question arises about the true identity of P. philippinese var. palawanense. I can offer this:

While I have not seen the published description, I can say that I think I was the first person to show photos of the type plant that is found on Palawan Island which I published in my original Paphiopedilum Grower's Manual on page 30. I also showed the plant in the 2nd edition of the manual published in 2004 on page 49. In each case I simply titled it: "P. philippinense from Palawan island."

That is not a legal description, but it is legal in the sense that this 'type' is the actual plant to which the epithet "palawanense" belongs. I know this because I went to Palawan in 1980 and collected a sackful of this type plant, an account of which I describe in detail in Chapter 1 in my new book The Last Orchid Hunter.

Incidentally, this type is certainly not a hybrid in any sense of the matter as they all bloomed out nearly identical. This confusion must come from the fact that the pouches and the staminodes are rather identical in P. randsii. P. philippinense and all its other varieties.

Now, if I can get the photo upload to work........I'll show the flowers..........if not you'll have to see either of my PGM books.

Sorry, didn't work.
 

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Heather

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If you need assistance with posting the photos, Lance, please let me know and I'll be happy to oblige.
Comparison photos would be helpful in this instance.

Also, what is the status of your new book at this time?
 

Heather

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What's the size like on this? We have a 'Select' x 'Christina' in our show exhibit that says it is phil. but is TINY! It has three flowers. I'll try to get a photo at some point in the next few days.
It's either a weird example of the species or not the normal phil.
 
C

cwt

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I have this as a normal phillipinense, or isnt it? Sorry for the background.


 

Lance Birk

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Roy,

From your photo, I'd say your plant looks like the type from Palawan.

They are smaller in all respects, to the standard P. philippinense, however the flowers are almost the same size, with petals noticeably shortened. Leaf width is nearly the same, too, but the leaves are a bit more upright, rather than spreading. Flower stems are much shortened, like your photo shows.

Can you give details about your plant's origin?

Thanks
 

Roy

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Lance, I bought the plant from a species grower in Queensland who listed it as 'Laevigatum" & still does but in discussions with him said that it came from the Palawan Is area according to his supplier. His plants seem to spread more than mine, maybe the light he gives it. When I can stop rot setting in with it, it grows like crazy with multiple growths. I have a number of phil's and this one is much smaller in growth, leaf length & width. Yes flowers except for petal length are similar to the others in size. Breeds like crazy too.
 

Heather

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Hmm, interesting. There's one at our show for sale right now by someone and the minute I saw it I thought "that's var. Palawense" but other slipper vendors thought it might just be a not well grown plant. I'm not sure but it's a SMALL flower and SMALL growths. I think it sold but I'll try to get a photo of it today if it is still there (it was under the table in back of where I was working last night...)
 

Roth

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Actually the flower is much smaller than regular philippinense. And to confuse the things:

- Marcel Lecoufle plant, described as "palawanense" is the natural hybrid. I try to find back the kind of publication about it.

- The Palawan plants are actually laevigatum, the dwarfer form of philippinene. But on Palawan there are as well normal philippinense.
 

Rick

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Yeah, I thought either palawanense or laevigatum. It's labeled roebelinii but I definitely don't think that is correct. Again, will get a photo and we can discuss.
I also have a very diminutive plant (as yet unbloomed labeled as roebelinii). All the verified roebelinii's I have are bigger than nominal philipinnese. So we'll see?
 

Rick

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Lance

Do you have some habitat info that could make a case for culturing this one a bit differently than the regular phili?
 

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