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insigneCymbidium insigne comes in two forms, the type form produces pink blooms with white labellum’s spotted purple/red, the other form is an album variant which produces pure white blooms with no purple pigment in the petals, sepals, or labellum. Flowers are large and more than twenty or so are carried on very tall and thin, but surprisingly strong spikes.

Cymbidium parishii is another moderately large growing plant with long arching flower spikes. It’s flowers are of medium size, perhaps 75 to 80 mm across. Flower color is white, set of by heavy dark red blotching on it’s white labellum’s. There are several forms of Cym. parishii in circulation, though the color is the same in all, flower form being the main difference between them. One particular clone named Cym. parishii var. Emma Menenger is described as being a tetraploid (4n) as opposed to the normal diploid (2n), it’s generally fuller and more shapely flowers being attributed to the doubling of chromosomes in the tetraploid form.

Cymbidium erythrostylum is a more compact growing plant than those mentioned so far, correspondingly, its flower spikes are shorter though its flowers are quite large. Cym. erythrostylum has a very distinctive flower form with its forward pointing petals shielding a small labellum lined with red, it’s sepals are large and full shaped and a bit unruly looking petals and sepals are pristine white.
The overall effect is quite beautiful and due to its compact plant size an impressive specimen can be produced with many flower spikes in a 200mm pot.

Cymbidium iridioides, previously known as Cym. giganteum, produces long arching spikes with up to 20 scented blooms of up to 100mm across, the flowers are colored from ginger brown to red and the white labellum has a yellow centre outlined by red blotches. While somewhat similar to Cym. tracyanum, it is neither as showy or as large and does not have the sinewy twisted petals and sepals of Cym. tracyanum, never the less it is an attractive species especially when the plant grows large enough to carry several flower spikes.

Cymbidium erythraeum, also known as Cym. longifolium has similarities to Cym. tracyanum, though it produces smaller flowers to around 80mm across. This species is particularly attractive in it’s own right and can make a fine specimen plant capable of carrying many spikes and flowers. Flower form is similar to Cym. tracyanum and flower color is more predominantly green with degrees of red/brown on the petals and sepals. The labellum is white with a red midline and a few scattered red spots at the edges making a highlight against the darker petals and sepals.

Cymbidium elegans is a most distinctive species due to it’s yellow bell like flowers. The flower segments are long and thin but because they remain pointing forward the flowers retain their long bell like appearance. The plant is quite compact with narrow leaves and the flower spikes grow up and then arch over with the weight of the flowers giving a cascading effect. Specimen plants can look quite stunning with spikes of up to 30 closely packed flowers cascading out from the foliage.

Cymbidium dayanum easily produces specimen plants and can produce several spikes from each bulb. The pendulous spikes are capable of carrying up to twenty flowers of around 40mm across. While the flowers are quite starry and taller than they are wide they are most attractive being colored ivory white with broad red mid lines in petals and sepals. The labellum is almost totally red with a white centre bordered in yellow. Cym. dayanum is not a large growing plant and a specimen can easily be achieved in a 200mm pot.

devonianum

floribundum

Note; There are two other species which are commonly available these are the miniature species Cym floribundum and Cym devonianum.

 

 

 

 

Sources of information on cymbidium species include:- “The Genus Cymbidium”, by David Du Puy and Philip Cribb, “Species Cymbidiums” by Stephen Early, on his web site, www.geocities.com/cymspecies

Noe Smith


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