Necklace orchid, Rosary Orchid, Rattlesnake Orchid, Rat’s Tail Orchid are the common names given to a beautiful native orchid that is found over a wide climatic areas and elevation throughout the country.
Scientifically called Pholidota imbricata, This orchid species is found in many provinces throughout the country. This range from sea level up to more than 1,800 meters in elevation.
Older residents of Novaliches , Fairview, Valenzuela, Bagong Silang, Norzagaray and San Jose del Monte, Bulacan would definitely recall seeing some of these orchids growing on molave, narra, duhat or mango trees. Unfortunately the flowers are quite minuscule and hardly noticeable especially when the orchids are growing at least 30 to 100 meters above ground.
Philippine Orchid Society’s Show
This species is one of the most commonly exhibited genus whenever there is annual or mid-year show hosted by the Philippine Orchid Society. When grown as specimen sized plant- One can admire the flowers from dozens or even hundreds of inflorescences.
This orchid was exhibited by Purificacion Orchids and won the “Best Cultured Plant ” at the 71st mid-year orchid and garden show. Which means that this was grown into large specimen blooming sized orchid.
In sunday or orchid flea market, this orchid species whenever without flower can easily be mistaken as Coelogyne orchid. Some of the small clump can be bought for a few hundred of pesos smaller ones with a couple of pseudo bulbs can be bought for just Php 50.00. Just a couple of clumps can be a conversational attraction in one’s garden.
One can easy naturalized this orchid on cultivated trees and MacArthur palm.
W.J. Hooker established this genus of sympodial orchids in 1825 when he adopted a manuscript name of Dr. John Lindley. The generic epithet is from the Greek pholidotos = scaly, referring to the scales on the bracts of the inflorescences of some species.
Blooming season is between July, August , September and until October. Flower size is about 1/2 ( 1.25 to 1.50 cm) in filtered light with clustered, conical, angular, wrinkled or sunken, dull pale green to dull brown pseudobulbs carrying a single, apical, sub-plicate, ovate-oblong to linear-lanceolate, coriaceous, prominently veined, gradually narrowing into the pseudo-petiolate base, dark green leaf with a lighter underside that can have red spots and blooms with a terminal, smooth, terete, erect-arcuate then drooping, 20″ [50 cm] long, racemose inflorescence that has a zigzag which can carry between 10 to at least 80 small flowers.
Pholidota imbricata is found in central China, Tibet, Assam, Bangladesh, eastern Himalayas, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, western Himalayas, Andaman Islands, Nicobar Islands, Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, Vietnam,Cambodia,Borneo, Java, Lesser Sunda Islands, Sumatra, Moluccas, Sulawesi, the Philippines, New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Fiji, New Caledonia, Santa Cruz, Vanuatu and Queensland, Australia
References and Bibliographies:
Davis , Greg, Steiner, Mona Liza, page 163 to 165 , Philippine Orchids ,Copyright 1952 / re-print 1982
Lc. Bella Blue Bird is a bluish cattleya orchid hybrid which won the “Best Cattleya” of the 71st Mid-Year Orchid and Garden show at the Hardin ng mga Bulaklak, Quezon Memorial Circle, Quezon City .
The cattleya is still quite rare in cultivation and had been grown into a marvelous specimen sized by Doctor Daniel Farnacio.
He was interviewed by award winning television documentary QTV channel 11 and GMA channel 7 or his passion in collecting orchids and plants. He had spend quite a fortune in building his greenhouse and orchids.
His efforts are rewarded with a lot of his cattleya orchids entered in the competition won awards.
One of the highlight of the 71st Philippine Orchid Society’s Mid-Year Orchid and Garden Show are the winners of individual plant and orchid competition.
Ms. Evangeline ” Vangie” Go won ” Best Orchid in Show”, ” Best Vandaceous Alliance”, “Best Philippine Species ” , ” Best Other Genera-Monopodial ” on a native orchid species that is commonly grown in many parts of the country.
The big specimen sized orchid Aerides quinquevulnera or Aerides quinquevulnerum with at least thousands of flowers. Sometimes people looked down upon native orchid species for having small flowers , sometimes flowering only once a year or just ordinary ones.
The small flowers have a pleasant smell and if grown properly can be a show stopper. Lovely and very photogenic and instagramers would surely like every nook and cranny of the exhibit.
Aside from the bragging rights, Ms. Evangeline ” Vangie” Go also won 3rd place “Best Orchid Landscape ” exhibit, She got several glass awards and cash incentives
The show is from September 2 to 16, 2017 and open from 8:00 am until 6:00 pm and daily lectures or talks starts at 2:00 pm. Minimal entrance fees of Php 30 general public and Php 20 senior citizens and students with valid ID’s.
The Philippine Orchid Society in cooperation with Quezon City government , Quezon City Memorial Administration with special participation of Del Monte , Philippines , Villar Sipag Foundation and other plant society presents to the gardening public the 71st Mid-Year Orchid and Garden show from September 2 to 16, 2017 .
There will also be a trade fair, landscape exhibit , plant and orchid competition, daily lectures.
The venue of the exhibit and trade fair will be at the Hardin ng mga Bulaklak or Flower Garden which is near the East Avenue gate entrance.
There is a minimal entrance fee of Php 30 for the general public and Php 20 for students and senior citizens with valid ID’s .
Staurochilus guibertii (Linden & Rchb.f. ) Christenson 1994 isanother native orchid species which is currently in bloom at the farm of well-known orchid , plant collector and landscaper from Cebu.
The owner of this blooming specimen orchid is Mr. Jaime Chua which acquired the plant as a clump about 4 years ago.
The common name was Guibert’s Staurachilus [French Orchid Enthusiast 1800’s] and used to be described under Cleisostoma guiberti by Linden & Rchb. f. 1862 and Trichoglottis guibertii (Linden & Rchb. f.) Rchb. f. 1872 . Trichoglottis guihertii (Linden & Rchb. f.) Ames & Quisumb. 1935.
Staurochilus guibertii naturalized on Anonang tree
The orchid is found in limestone areas in the Philippines at elevations of sea level to 500 meters. It is endemic and the flowers had a faint early morning fragrance, gardenia-citrus.
He attached the specimen orchid on Anonang trees or Cordia dichotoma. The tree is also a prefect host for native vandas , aerides and other orchid species. The tree is also found in other Asian countries like southern China, Indonesia, Laos, Thailand,India,Pakistan, Vietnam,Malaysia, Taiwan and Papua New Guinea.
The tree is known to have medicinal properties and its branches are used to drive away termites.
Photo courtesy of Mr. Jaime Chua and permission was sought, The purpose of the usage is for non-profit and educational purposes.
Disclaimer: The author does not engage in buying and selling of this orchid species. Those who wanted to contact Mr. Jaime Chua , There is a link of his FB account.
Aerides savageana is another orchid that is currently in bloom at the farm of Mr. Jaime Chua ( landscaper, orchid collector ) in Cebu . According to the owner, the orchids were acquired about 3 or 4 years ago as a medium -sized orchid. With special care and good fertilization techniques, his Aerides savageana bloom in mass this blooming season.
Aerides savageananaturalized on a living tree within the farm compound
This orchid species was described in under the author A.H. Kent but still relatively confused as Aerides odorata or Aerides quinquevulnera variety purpurata.
The common name of this orchid is Savage’s Aerides ,foxtail orchid.
This orchid species is fairy common and its blooming season is quite variable, normally it blooms during the onset of the rainy season around late May to August which is also the blooming season of the more common Aerides quinquevulnera which is common throughout the country , Malaysia and Papua New Guinea.
There are times that this orchid species is quite plentiful in sunday market particularly in Centris – Quezon Avenue . Sometimes forest gathered orchids are also sold at the famous Bayanihan street near a popular restaurant chain near Baclaran church.
There are also orchid being sold at Quezon Memorial Center – plant area. People would refer to these forest or jungle collected orchid species as Gubatum harbatum or Gubatum hablotum subspecies collectum to sound more scientific.
This is one of the 8 to 10 Aerides species that is said to be found in the country. There are also color variations.
Note : All photos are from Mr. Jaime Chua and permission was sought by the author.