Posts Tagged With: Grammatophyllum speciosum

Grammatophyllum speciosum


Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Orchidaceae
Subfamily: Epidendroideae
Tribe: Cymbidieae
Subtribe: Cyrtopodiinae
Alliance: Cymbidium
Genus: Grammatophyllum
Species: G. speciosum

It is an epiphytic and occasionally a lithophytic plant, forming spectacular root bundles. Its cylindric pseudobulbs can grow to a length of 2.5 m. It can grow to gigantic clusters weighing from several hundred kilograms to more than one ton.

Each raceme can grow to a height of 3m, bearing up to eighty flowers, each 10 cm wide. The flowers are yellow colored with maroon or dark red spots. These flowers are remarkable, since the lowest flowers have no lip and these flowers function as osmophores for the entire inflorescence and continue to emit chemical scent to attract pollinators as flowers open in succession. It blooms only once every two to four years. This orchid can, however, remain in bloom for up to two months.

  • Giant orchid, not to be confused with Pteroglossaspis ecristata (Fernald) Rolfe  or Barlia robertiana, both of which are also commonly called the giant orchid.
  • Tiger orchid, not to be confused with Rossioglossum grande or Maxillaria species, both are also called tiger orchid.
  • Queen of the orchids, not to be confused with Cattleya species
  • Sugar cane orchid, for its resemblance to a sugarcane plant of the genus Saccharum

It is native to New Guinea, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines, growing in crotches of large trees on exposed areas of the lowland tropical rainforest.

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