Ascocentrum aurantiacum subsp. philippinense

Ascocentrum aurantiacum subsp. philippinense 1992

Ascocentrum aurantiacum (J.J. Sm.) Schltr. 1913 was first established in 1913 by a German taxonomist, botanist and author on several books Mr. Friedrich Richard Rudolf Schlechter (Berlin  born October 16, 1872 Berlin / died November 15, 1925 Berlin ).He was the curator of the Berlin Botanical Museum and orchid specialist. He explored Africa, Indonesia, New Guinea, Australia , Central and South America  . His vast herbarium was destroyed during the bombing of Berlin in 1945.

This orchid species with 7 spikes is grown by the author for more than 5 years

This orchid sub- species was reclassified in 1992 by Dr. Eric Christenson . He  is a research taxonomist with strong interests in the Aeridinae (Sarcanthinae), neotropical floristics, and the conservation of horticultural plants. He authored a monograph of Phalaenopsis for the International Phalaenopsis Alliance (IPA) in 2001.   Dr. Christenson is known for his articles that attempt to bridge the gap between taxonomy and horticulture as well as his in-depth book reviews. He is a strong advocate for orchid conservation, particularly ex situ propagation, and actively works with commercial growers to that end.

close -up of the inflorescence

This orchid sub-species is found in many parts of the Philippines at elevations up to 1,200 meters elevation. Its growth is monopodial in warm climates growing epiphyte in forest  blooms after a short period of dry season from late February to late May .

This orchid species  is quite popular among orchid collectors which appreciate their orange flowers . Their minuscule flowers are bore on erect 10 centimeter long stem , many flowered , racemose inflorescence  are about 1 centimeter.

Ascocentrum miniatum in Vietnam flowering in-situ

Other species of the genus Ascocentrum may be found in other Southeast Asian countries from Himalayas,  India, Burma, Thailand, Indo-China , Malaysia, Indonesia . They have a short, simple to bifurcate stem (max. 15-18 cm) with an upright, compact, conical to racemose inflorescence, consisting of smaller brightly colored flowered . These flowers have a prominent spur and a strap-like lip. Their bright colors vary between yellow, orange, red and pink.

Kagawara an inter-generic orchid hybrid

This orange orchid species is highly desirable  parent breeding material for producing the colorful Ascocendas, Kagawara  and Mokaras which add shades of orange, pink, purple , yellowish colored flower and is popular cut flower industry in Southeast Asia.

There were about 70 man made inter generic  genus and thousands of hybrids produced.


Ames ,Oakes . 1944 . Destruction of the Schlechter Herbarium by Bombing . Amer. Orch .Soc .Bull . 13 ,no.4.

Ames , Oakes . 1933. Friedrich Richard Rudolf Schlechter -1872-1925.Amer . Orch Soc. Bull. 2, no.2.

American Orchid Society Bulletin Vol 55 No 2 1986

A to Z of SE Asian Orchid Species O’Byrne 2001; Lindleyana Vol 17 No 1 2002

Orchids of the Philippines Cootes 2001 ; Ascocentrum aurantiacum

Flora Malesiana Orchids of the Philippines Vol I Agoo, Shuiteman and de Vogel2003

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