[pleurothallid-l] introduction and pleurothallid identificationrequest

Lynn O'Shaughnessy freespirit at pleurothallids.com
Thu Jun 9 11:03:24 EDT 2005

This is not a Trichosalpinx.  It looks like it may be Unguella lepidota
(used to be Pleurothallis lepidota) but I cannot be sure since I can't see
the floral parts.  The literature says that this species comes from Panama
and Costa Rica.


Lynn O



From: pleurothallid-l-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
[mailto:pleurothallid-l-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Brian
Sent: Wednesday, June 08, 2005 8:43 PM
To: pleurothallid-l at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject: [pleurothallid-l] introduction and pleurothallid


To All,
    I recently joined both this list and the Pleurothalld Alliance, and have
long been interested in species orchids, including those that might be
considered by some to be 'insignificant'.  I could, for instance, imagine
myself concentrating only on Appendicula or Agrostophyllum - though there
are too many 'botanicals' in the world to make that a realistic (or
desirable...) goal.  And I like  beautiful, larger  flowers a great deal, as
well.  I currently grow humidity-dependent orchids in an Orchidarium,
modified with timers for both for the fan and for an external humidifier
(the humidifier operates through a hole cut in the side of the case) to keep
the humidity sufficiently high, especially in the very dry indoor winters
here (Minnesota).  I am also the designer of the Wardian case described at
http://www.orchidlady.com/wardian1.html. (The case worked just fine for a
long time, but I took it down after a tornado hit here, and the space needed
to be converted.  I'm considering construction of a new, improved one,
however, to supplement the Orchidarium  - my orchid collection is growing in
size, even though I try to limit myself to small species...).
   Given my growing conditions (unavoidably hot in the winter - a centrally
heated building in a cold climate; a Wardian case is an absolute necessity,
and even that requires a lot of maintenance), I would like to know of
particularly heat-and/or-drought-tolerant pleurothallids.
   There are P. tribuloides and P. schiedei plants in the college greenhouse
right now, where the humidity is more or less maintained, but they haven't
flowered for a long time (though they're vegetatively robust).  Do those
need to be chilled at a particular time?
   With regard to my specific request from members of this list, I bought a
pleurothallid from Belize from a nursery in Florida a couple of years ago.
I took it to a meeting of the Orchid Society of Minnesota a couple of months
ago, and asked Kathy Creger about its identity - Kathy thinks that it is a
Trichosalpinx, which is a welcome identification.  I sent a photo of this
plant in flower to the OGD a couple of years ago - it generated some
comments from people who thought that it was interesting, but brought no
identification as to species.  It's a fascinating plant, in that it has
thick, heavy, highly succulent leaves that shrink when it's about to flower,
which it does several times a year.  The leaves then enlarge again - they
are obviously reservoirs.  It flowers multiple times on one individual leaf,
and the individual leaves are long-lived.  I'll paste in a photo after this
message.  The plant is in a 3 1/2" or 4" pot (I'm at home right now, and
don't have the exact pot size).
   I had thought, at the time that I bought this plant, that perhaps I
shouldn't buy it, due to its possible difficulty - but it has become one of
my favorite plants, among both orchids and xerophytes (and aroids,
gesneriads, etc....).
   I would greatly appreciate any insight into the specific identity of this
plant (or species to which it might be related) that anyone on this list can
   As a further bit of introduction with regard to my orchid and other plant
interests, I'm particularly interested in
African/Madagascan/other-Indian-Ocean-Island orchids (and in orchids from
other regions...).  I am also a xerophyte person (I have wonderful
east-facing windows in the labs where I work - those are populated with
plants that are designed to cope, in particular, with the conditions of a
hot, dry winter).  On the other hand, some winter growers are also included.
   This might, to a large extent, be the wrong forum for such a question -
but I'll ask again anyway.  I would like to have advice on orchids that will
tolerate (or even prefer) drought and high temperatures during the winter,
should any of you know of such plants (are there any xero-pleurothallids?),
so that I can supplement my collection of other xerophytes with such
orchids.  I have some Madagascan Oeceoclades that fill the bill, but would
like to have others.  Right now, I have some Encyclias and a couple of
Angraecums that I think will be ok (some have already come through one
winter, in a north, dry window unscathed).  I'm planning to try Ansellia
africana, and have recently acquired Jumellea rigida, Angraecum
elephantinum, and Angraecum sororium to try.  I'm a bit concerned about the
A. sororium, though, and might have to move it into a better environment if
it doesn't shut down for the winter.



Hi, things have been WAY too quiet on this list for WAY too long.  I haven't
been a member for long, but I have learned quite a bit from various people
on the list.  Our local orchid society has been trying to find people to do
talks, and I volunteered.  I know, it is all my fault.  As I tried to figure
out what to talk about, I started thinking about what I know the most about,
and that is pleurothallids.  Living in Florida, I have to be careful of what
pleurothallids I try to grow.  I'm going to talk to them about how you
decide whether or not an orchid is appropriate for you or not.  I also want
to go over the genera with an emphasis on which pleuros are warmth tolerant.
I have a handful, but not enough to fill up a talk.  Does anyone here know
of any warmth-tolerant pleurothallids that they would recommend to a bunch
of us here in Tallahassee, FL?  Also, do you know of where I can snag some
pictures of them?  Our group has a lot of relatively new members, and
pictures are very important to them.
Thanks a lot!

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Brian A. O'Brien, Department of Chemistry, Gustavus Adolphus College
800 West College Avenue, Saint Peter, Minnesota  56082  U.S.A.
e-mail bobrien at gustavus.edu or bobrien at gac.edu  
tel. (507)933-7310     fax (507)933-7041   http://www.gustavus.edu/~bobrien 

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