Aerides leeana orchid in Mr. Ronald Achacoso’s garden

San Francisco del Monte , Quezon City, Philippines

The Philippine Native Plant Conservation Society’s members had decided to visit the wake of  Mr. Ronald Achacoso’s father who died a few days earlier.

macopa tree with a lot of ochids, bromeliads, ferns, hoyas, dischidias , epiphytic cactus

When we entered their compound , the group was amazed with the varieties of native plants, orchids, trees, hoyas, dischidias, tillandsias , ferns, fruit trees , aquarium plants at the Achacoso’s garden .

The house is beautifully preserve , according to his brother -in-law . The house was built in the late 1950’s with very minor renovation.  The area is about 800 square meter lot with beautifully landscaped garden,  mini pools decades-old mango tree,  macopa tree , coconut and caimito trees .

mango tree with a lot of orchids, hoyas, ferns and dischidias

I think it is my fourth time to visit the place and i always marvel Ronald’s affection for the environment and his passion for plants!

Aerides leeana

Aerides leena used to be called Aerides jarkianum by orchid hobbyists and taxonomist a few decades ago .

Habitat:

The orchid ( Aerides)  genus is fondly called cat’s tail orchid, fox bush orchid due to the shape of the orchid flowers and pendulous inflorescence. There were 25 known species and several varieties .

There are 5- known species and several forms that occur in the Philippines and this is one of the endemic ( found only in the country) . This orchid is found in the provinces of Bataan, Rizal, Quezon , Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Cavite in the island of Luzon.

  Aerides leeana is an erect  25cm to 35 cm tall monopdial, it sometimes becomes pendulous.

This orchid was bought from a weekend market about 3 -years ago and had been mounted on macopa tree .

Cultural and Etho-Botanic Values:

Aside from the aesthetics beauty of this orchid species, some people and ethnic groups believes that growing these type of orchid species can bring good luck and ward -off evil spirits .

 Aerides leeana had 3- inflorescence with at least 50 flowers

Status: 

This orchid used to be very common according to some orchid growers and hobbyists until the 1980’s. This orchid was collected in the provinces which are very near Metro Manila due to loss of habitat, over collecting , land development and lack of interest to propagate ( tissue culture) . This beautiful orchid species is already on the verge of extinction.

References:

Cootes, Jim : Orchids of the Philippines 2001

Cootes , Jim : Native Orchid Species 2009