The Journal of the Canadian Orchid Congress
Le Journal de la Fédération Canadienne des Sociétés Orchidophiles

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August 1998 - The Quebec Issue
Volume 10 - Number 2

Editor: Malcolm Adams


1998 Canadian Orchid Congress Update

The programme for the weekend will include the show and sales, lectures by Dr. Ben Berliner, Ken Girard, Cordelia Head and Yves Aubry. The speaker to replace Russel Hutton (who is no longer coming to Canada) will be Mario Ferrusi who will talk on Odontoglossum culture and hybridizing. Plus, The COC banquet, (a five-course gourmet meal), the COC Annual General Meeting and the COC Auction.

A total of 24 orchid vendors have reserved space at our show so you can expect a tremenous selection of sales material from Canada and the USA. A list of the vendors is included on page 2. Note the generous offer from J&L Orchids.

Early Congress Registration until September 4, 1998. See your COC rep. who should have registration information or contact the Registrar, Malcohn Adams, phone/fax: (450) 467-4795 or email:

End Of An Era

by Malcolm Adams

This is the last COCnews that I will produce. After six years of service I feel that it is time to introduce new blood to the task. Someone with fresh ideas and perhaps a more up-to-date presentation. Someone with more persuasive powers than I have to get you, the orchid growers, to submit more articles.

That someone is Jerry Bolce of the Central Ontario Orchid Society (COOS). Jerry is currently the editor of the COOS newsletter and is a successful and well known grower in Eastern Canada.

It was back in 1993 that Annette Bagby, then the COC President persuaded me to take over the newsletter and since then I have served under Steve Saunders and now under Jeanette Arthurs. It has been an interesting and sometimes frustrating period. To all of you who have supported me by submitting articles, many thanks and I hope you will continue to support your new editor.

In future, all communications and articles should be addressed to: Jerry Bolce, 299 Wiltshire Place, Waterloo, Ontario N2T lL4. Phone: 519-885-1888.


Paphiopedilum henryanum was only described in 1987 so breeders have not had much time to do their work; there are, though, at least 18 Paph. hybrids registered to date with P. henryanum as a parent and one intergeneric hybrid, Phragmipaphium Charming Daughter (x Phrag. longifolium), so the toothpicks have been busy.

The introduction of P.henryanum was controversial, to say the least, featuring an unseemly squabble between Emil Leuckel, President of the German Orchid Society, and Guido Braem, who is no stranger to controversy. Braem rightly claimed to have published the description of this species first, as P. henryanum, while Leuckel published it as P. dollii, claiming that Braem's publication was invalid. While Braem clearly had priority, the 'Henry' who was being honoured by his choice of name was none other than Henry Azadehdel, who was in deep trouble, having been convicted of smuggling orchid species on his travels. So, the International Orchid Commission, against its better judgement, accepted Leuckel's arguments and the name P. dollii. The first few hybrid registrations, dating from 1989, were made using that name, util two years later when the IOC reversed its decision and the RHS changed all the registrations to show P. henryanum as a parent.

P. henryanum has certain striking characteristics which excited breeders when it was introduced. The bright pink pouch seems to be dominant in most of its hybrids and is unusual because of the way the colour wraps around the pouch almost seamlessly, whereas in most other Paph. species the colour is an overglaze on the front of the pouch only. The boldly spotted dorsal sepal, which gives it the look of a complex hybrid, is also passed on to its progeny. The petals are slightly ruffled along the edges and are usually pinkish in colour. They are often, but not always, spotted or speckled to some degree.

A fine example of the species is P. henryanum 'King Kong' AM/AOS with good form and size. Another is P. henryanum 'Chunky' HCC/AOS; this flower has more spots on the petals. A rather strange-looking flower is P. henryanum var. semi-album 'Gondaisouzu' S/CSA. While this has a pink pouch, the sepals and petals are clear green and the segments seem to be excessively ruffled.

P. henryanum has been placed in the section Paphiopedilum of the genus Paphiopedilum (with the P. insigne group) so we will commence the study of hybridizing with this species by looking at some of the crosses that have been made within this group- Paphiopedilum hybrids that are made within a section are usually more consistent, and have fewer genetic problems, than hybrids with members of other sections.

P. Tyke is the cross with P. barbigerum. The influence of P. barbigerum seems to dominate the form of the flower but the dorsal sepal is boldly spotted and the pouch is pink.

(P. hirsutissimum x P. henryanum) results in a flower that looks like P. hirsutissimum, although smaller, but with some colour influence from P. henryanum. In this case the bold spots on the dorsal sepal have been reduced to speckles.

P. Doll's Kobold is the hybrid with P. charlesworthii and has produced a flower which is strongly P. charlesworthii in shape but with a pink pouch and a well-spotted dorsal sepal. This is a fine flower (no clonal name given) which won the medal for the Best Complex Hybrid at the WOC in Brazil. Evidently, the complex hybrid 'look' of the flower outweighed the fact that it is a primary hybrid! Note the white staminode from P. charlesworthii.

There seems to be a pattern emerging in these crosses, in that the colour influence of P. henryanum seems to be dominant but the form is subordinate to that of the other parent.

Crosses with the Cochlepetalum section have proven to be successful.

P. Diane Vickery, the hybrid with P. glaucophyllum, has received several AOS awards. The flower of the clone 'Equanimity' HCC/AOS shows good contrast between the pink pouch, the boldly spotted green dorsal and the pink petals with distinct black spots. P. Diane Vickery 'Jamboree' HCC/AOS is a well-shaped flower with a fine dorsal sepal. The sequential-flowering habit has been retained, evidently.

P. Isabel Adjani, (x Utgard) is a related cross, P. Utgard being P.(glaucophyllum x chamberlainianum). It looks similar to P. Diane Vickery.

P. Pebblepath is another hybrid which has received AOS awards. This introduces genes from P. rothschildianum as it is the cross with P. Transvaal (glaucophyllum x rothschildianum). The flowers are larger and bolder; an example is P. Pebblepath 'Glendora'HCC/AOS. Another example with wider segments is the clone 'Boulder Springs' HCC/AOS.

P. Tropical Magic is the cross with P. primulinum, an attractive combination of yellow and pink. This hybrid also has the shape and the sequential-flowering habit of its Cochlepetalum parent.

In general, breeding with the Barbata section has not produced consistently good results and in any cross of this type there will be some flowers with less than desirable form.

P. Graham Robertson (x sukhakulii) is an attractive hybrid, combining the spotted dorsal of P. henryanum with the spotted petals of P. sukhakulii, and a rosy pink pouch to complete the picture.

P.(Makuli x henryanum) involves three Barbata section species, P. lawrenceanum, P. callosum and P. sukhakulii. The example shown has the rosy pink pouch of P. henryanum, and the dorsal has speckles, but the form indicates a squabble between the four species with no clear winner!

Some breeders are crossing P. hentyanum with vinicolor or flame paphs. with the aim of introducing spots into the dorsal sepals. Some interesting hybrids have resulted from this line of breeding.

P.(Red Glory x henryanum) has produced some richly coloured flowers with smooth 'hot-pink' pouches, spotted petals and the desired spotted dorsals. One example shows a wide dorsal with a cluster of raised black spots, each of which is surrounded by a halo effect . There is an unspotted border to the dorsal which sets off the spots nicely. An added bonus is the good form and the wide spotted petals. As with similar crosses there will be a number which are not as good, but it is worthwhile searching for those that are.

Some breeding has been done with the Brachypetalum section.

P. Wossner Henrycolor is the cross with P. concolor. This is an elegant flower with deep pink petals, pale pink pouch and a yellow dorsal heavily spotted with purple.

P.(henryanum x godefroyae var. leucochilum) is interesting because of the colour inheritance. Poth of the parents are dominant for pouch colour but in this flower P. godefroyeae has completely wiped out the pink pouch of P. henryanum, resulting in a flower with a white pouch, a white dorsal with heavy burgundy spotting and wide pink petals which are also spotted.

P. Governor Patrick Henry is the cross with P. bellatullum and is the last hybrid to be discussed. The flower shown appears to have good, wide segments and rich colour. The dorsal is well-shaped and boldly spotted burgundy on pale green. The pouch is a solid, glossy pink and the petals are glossy red, spotted burgundy. The stem is tall and straight, unusual for a P. bellatulum hybrid. This seems to be a cross with good potential.

So, much has been done in the past ten years and there are many more hybrids in the development stage. We can look forward to compact, floriferous and brightly-coloured flowers with P. henryanum as a parent.

Judy Adams, ECOS Librarian and a AOS Student Judge. This article was a presentation given by Judy at the May, 1998 AOS judging seminar in Ann Arbor, Michigan.


The genus Zygopetalum, which was named by William Jackson Hooker in 1827, gets its name from the Greek names zygon (yoke) and petalon (petal), refering to the fusing of sepals and petals with the base of the column. There is a thickening at the base of the labellum which appear to join together all the flower segments. Experts tell us that this genus is composed of some 20 to 40 species of epiphytes or terrestrials from South America, Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Peru and Bolivia.


The rhizomes are short, the pseudobulbs are short, stout, fleshy and basally enveloped by long-sheathed leaves. The leaves are distichous, elongate, often glossy, thin-textured, shallowly plicate or strongly ribbed. Infloreseences area raceme from the base of the pseudobulbs, short or elongate, erect or arching, one to many-flowered. The flowers vary from small to large, showy, spreading and waxy. Colors range from white, yellow or green banded or mottled maroon to magenta. The lip is far paler, often white suffused rose to violet, sometimes fragrant. The petals and sepals are sub-similar, free or shortly connate, the lateral sepals adnate to column foot forming a short mentum. The lip is articulated to the column foot, sessile, deeply or obscurely trilobed. The lateral lobes are often small, spreading or erect. The midlobe is broadly spreading. The column is short, stout, subterete, incurved, the base produced into a short foot, apex sometimes 2-winged. The anther is terminal.

All species of Zygopetalum have more or less large flowers without prominent side lobes to the lip and with the disc of the lip more or less cuneate (wedge shaped) and porrectly (outward and forward) spreading in front.

The family tree

The whole Zygopetalum alliance of genera has been reviewed by L. Garay in 1973. Several species have been placed in the allied genera Mendocella and Neogardneria. In addition, Acacallis, Aganisia, Batemania, Koellensteinia, Paradisanthus, Pabstia and Zygosepalum are all recognized as distinct genera. Zygopetalum and Chondrorhyncha have been differenciated by the latter lacking pseudobulbs or, if such are present, are minute. Zygopetalum is distinguished from Lycaste and Xylobium from its inflorescence which arise in the axils of the flower leaf-sheaths and by its Up which is usually provided with a transverse callus or a transverse flabellate crest.

The genus Zygopetalum is in the Vandoideae subfamily, Maxillarieae tribe. Along with it are the subtribes Cryptarrheninae, Zygopetalinae, Lycastinae, Maxillariinae, Stanhopeinae, Telipogoninae, Ornithocephalinae and Oncidiinae. In the Zygopetalinae subtribe, we encounter the following alliances: Warrea alliance (pseudobulbs of several internodes, leaves plicate, inflorescence racemose: Otostylis, Warrea, Warreella and Warreopsis), Zygopetalum alliance (pseudobulbs of one intemode, inflorescence racemose, of few to many flower, callus generally high and ridged. Aganisisa, Batemania, Galeottia, Koellensteinia, Neogardneria, Pabstia, Paradisianthus, Promenaea, Zygopetalum, Zygosepalum), Chondrorhyncha alliance (pseudobulbs small or lacking, leaves conduplicate, inflorescence one-flowered. Benzingia, Bollea, Chaubardia, Chaubardiella, Chondrorhyncha, Cochleanthes, Dodsonia, Hoehneela, Huntleya, Kefersteinia, Peseatorea, Stenia), Cheiradenia (pseudobulb of several internodes, leaves conduplicate, flowers fascicled), Dichaea (Dichaeinae, plants monopodial, inflorescence one-flowered), Scuticaria (leaves cylindrical, inflorescence one or few-flowered) and Vargasiella (plants monopodial, inflorescence racemose. The subtribe Vargasiellinae was not validly published, but might be valid for this genus).

Intrageneric hybrids

To this date, there are 67 Zygopetalum intrageneric hybrids. The first intrageneric hybrid, Zygopetalum Sedenii (mackayi x maxillare) was registered in 1874. Since then, there were 9 first generation, 6 second generation, 3 third, 13 fourth, 25 fifth and 9 sixth generation hybrids.

Chronologically, from 1874 to 1899, 5 intrageneric hybrids have been produced. From 1903 to 1941 and from 1950 to 1969, only 4 were made in each period. Three again were made in the 1970s, ten in the 1980s. A regain of interest hit this genus from 1990; no less than 39 intrageneric hybrids were produced, representing 60 percent of the total.

Intergeneric hybrids

To this date, there has been 66 intergeneric genera produced with Zygopetalum. Chronologically, on the intergeneric front, the end of the 1800s saw the first 5 hybrids, and 8 other were produced during the first decade of our century. From 1912 to 1975, only 5 were introduced, from 1976 to 1979 6 more were made. The 1980s marked the creation of 12 others. A real explosion of intergeneric hybrids occured during the present decade; 7 in 1991, 4 in 1992, 3 in 1993 and in 1994, 6 in 1995 and 11 in 1996, 4 in 1997 and so far one in 1998.

Awarded species and intrageneric hybrids

Up to now, there have been 18 awards granted to Zygopetalum species: 6 AM, 1 HCC, 1 CBR, 3 CBM, 1 CHM, 1 JC and 5 CCM. The most awarded species is Z. mackayi with 3 AM, 1 HCC, 3 CCM and 1 JC. Z. crinitum has received 1 CHM and 1 CBM, Z. intermedium has received 1 AM, Z. maxillare has received 2 CCM and 1 CBM, Z. rhombilabium 1 CBR, Z. triste 1 CBM and Z. wendlandii 1 AM.

On the intrageneric front, however, 65 awards have been given: 2 FCC, 22 AM, 26 HCC, 3 JC, 1 CBR, 3 CBM, 2 CHM and 9 CCM. The FCCs went to Z. Artur Elle 'Tanzanite' and Z. Helen-Ku 'Crestwood'. The most awarded hybrid is Z. Artur Elle with 12 awards, followed by Z. Helen-Ku with 8 awards, Z. Blue Eyes with 6 awards and Z. Kiwi Geiser with 5 awards.

Awarded intergeneric hybrids

Of the 24 intergeneric genera, representing 77 hybrids, only 6 AM, 6 HCC and 3 JC have been awarded. Hamelswellsara alone received 8 awards, followed by Galeopetalum with 1, Propetalum with 3 awards, Zygocolax 3 with and Zygowarrea with only one.

Andre Levesque, Les Orchidophiles de Montreal. Andre grows Pleurothallids and is an AOS student Judge at the Toronto Judging Centre.

Orchids "Back-to-School"

Did your orchids spend the summer outside? If you do not plan to open an insectarium in your house, remember that your plants need a special treatment before you bring them in.

The treatment is given in three applications at weekly intervals. Plants come inside the house 1 day after last treatment. For example: lst application on August 22, 2nd application on August 29, 3rd application on September 5, and plants inside on September 6.

Warm growing orchids should be brought inside mid-September (minimum night temperature 12C). Most cool growing orchids can stay out until the end of September (beware of frost). The nobile type Dendrobium and most Cymbidium can stay outside until mid-October.

The treatment contains Cygon 2E that does not suit some plants like Aerangis, Aeranthes, Angraecum and Angraecoides, Psychopsis (Oncidium) papilio and some Cypripedium, Lycaste, Coryanthes, Anguloa and Catasetum. In case of doubt, use Malathion instead of Cygon 2E.

25 ml dicofol 3.9% (African Violet Spray)
10 ml Cygon 2E (or 15 ml Malathion)
2.5 ml Safer's/Trounce Insecticide Soap mixed in 5 litres of lukewarm water.

Protect yourself properly (eyes, nose and skin - see your local hardware store for a good mask with a filter). Proceed early in the morning (away from sun). Submerge the pot and as much of the plant as possible. Spray the balance of the plant. Protect flower buds.

This is the way I do it - there are other ways, but in any case do not bring new 'pets' in your house.

Marie-Claude Salembier, ECOS

Trounce, an Alternative Pesticide

As Marie-Claude Salembier explains in her "Back-to-school" article, Cygon can cause problems for certain sensitive plants, e.g. phragmipediums. It is also unpleasant to use in the house if YOU need to do some pest control during the winter (and hazardous). For the past year I have been using Trounce, a pesticide made by Safers which is basically insecticidal soap with the addition of pyrethrin (a natural insecticide derived from the Pyrethrum flower). It is this additive which makes Trounce effective, I have never found Safers soap any good on its own. I hesitated to recommend it before I had thoroughly tested it on a range of plants but I am very satisfied with the results on various plant pests, indoors and out. It does not seem to have any adverse effects on orchid plants, including seedlings.

Trounce is available as a concentrate in various sizes from 500ml to 4 litres. It is also available in 1 litre spray bottles ready-mixed but this is an expensive way to purchase water! The ready-mixed Trounce comes in two dilutions, one labelled "for House Plants" and the other labelled "for Garden Use". An examination of the labels reveals that the house-plant format contains 50% of the active ingredients listed for the garden format. The label on the container of concentrate only gives directions for diluting for garden use, 50 ml to 1 litre of water, thus one can replicate the house-plant format by using 25 ml per litre of water. This is the dilution that I have been using.

A 500 ml container of concentrate (which will make 20 litres of house-plant mix) will only cost a few dollars more than 1 litre of ready-mixed house-plant formula, so you can SAVE $$$.

Trounce is a contact insecticide, not a systemic, so several applications spaced 2 weeks apart may be needed for severe infestations. Take the usual precautions for applying insecticides, the fact that it is a natural product does not mean that it is harmless! It does not, however, have any unpleasant smell so it can be used indoors providing it is kept away from food, pets and children.

By the way, I do not own any shares in Safers!

Judy Adams, ECOS Librarian

Bletilla, une orchidée vivace

I1 y a deux ans, au printemps, j'ai découvert une petite espèce d'orchidées. N'allez pas vous imaginer un voyage dans un pays exotique, dans un forêt pluvieuse et luxuriante, ou toute autre aventure du genre où l'on dépense une fortune... J'avais seulement les bleus de l'hiver et je m'étais offert quelques heures d'évasion chez mon pépiniériste favori. Soudain, au détour d'un tronc d'étagères, une forme familière attira mon attention. Parmi les paquets de bulbes printaniers, j'aperçus un labelle et cinq pétales. Il n'en fallait pas plus pour que ma main saisisse ce sachet ensorcelé et que mon portefeuille sorte de ma poche comme par magie. Par chance, la dépense n'était pas excessive, car ces plants ne côutent que quelques dollars'an dernier un bulbe m'a coûté 2,99$). Depuis ce temps, je suis tombé en amour avec cette plante à la délicate petite fleur rose et au feuillage panaché.

Précisions quelques détails au sujet des Bletilla. Ce que j'appelle un bulbe ressemble plus à un rhizome de gloxinia qu'à un bulbe de tulipe. Cette caractéristique est normale, car c'est une orchidée terrestre. De plus, on nous la vend comme plante vivace de zone 5 pouvant être cultivée ici moyennant une protection hivernale. Je ne pourrais vous dire à ce moment si elle résiste à notre hiver; car ce n'est que 1'été dernier que je l'ai introduite dans mes plates-bandes. Il sera intéressant de voir le résultat quand les trois pieds de glace qui recouvrent tout depuis le 5 janvier auront disparu.

Par contre, j'ai réussi à obtenir une floraison en plantant un rhizome dans un mélange pour semis de type Pro-mix. Comme c'est une orchidée terrestre, elle demande un sol relativement humide.

Les Bletillia sont originaires d'Asie et ont reçu ce nom à cause de leur ressemblance avec les espèces sud-américaines du genre Bletia. On s'accorde généralement pour dire qu'il y a trois espèces de Bletillia sur le marché: Bletilla striata, Bletilla formosana et Bletilla ochracea.

Bletilla striata, que l'on retrouve généralement chez le pépiniériste, existe sous trois formes: la forme rosée (hyacintha), la forme blanche (alba) et une troisième variété avec une ligne blanche sur le pourtour de la feuille.

Bletilla ochracea est de couleur jaune moutarde et a été introduite récemment de l'Ouest de la Chine. Elle s'hybride avec 1'espèce B. striate et on commence à enregistrer quelques croisements.

Bletilla striata et Bletilla formosa seraient toutes deux vivaces dans la zone de rusticité 5. Elles demandent toutefois un paillis assez épais afin d'éviter qu'une pousse hâtive ne gèle et de compromettre la floraison. Elles doivent être plantées dans un sol riche et exposé à la pleine lumière. Dans des conditions de culture optimale, elle grossit rapidement et peut produire des hampes qui se ramifient, chaque ramification produisant de 3 à 10 fleurs.

On les dit résistantes aux maladies et aux prédateurs. Mais on doit éviter que l'eau ne s'accumule autour des rhizomes pour prévenir toute pourriture.

La culture en pot est possible dans un mélange pour orchidées terrestres ou dans de la mousse de sphaigne. On lui donnera beaucoup de lumière et on gardera le sol humide. On veillera aussi à lui donner une période de repos hivernal au frais et au sec.

Depuis quelques années, des amateurs se sont penché sur l'hybridation. Ils ont réussi à croiser des Bletilla avec des Calanthe, mais les résultats se font encore attendre. Le genre Bletilla a aussi été croisé avec le genre Arundina, mais ce croisement n'a pas encore été enregistré.

Les hybrides de Bletilla enregistrés à ce jour sont:

Bletilla (striata x formosana) : Yokohama (N. Suzuki l956)

Bletilla formosana x ochracea): Coritani (R. Evenden 1994)

Bletilla (striata x ochracea): Brigantes (R. G. & Evenden 1994)

Cet article résume mes observations personnelles et les informations recueillies dans le Bechtel et le Pridgeon, ainsi qu'un article de Clark T. Riley trouvé sur internet. J'espère avoir la chance de revoir ces plantes dans mon jardin le printemps prochain et ainsi promouvoir la culture de ce genre au Québec.

David Bourassa, Les Orchidophiles de Montréal

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