Saturday, February 9, 2008

Angraceum Superbum

After hibernating for three years, my rare Angraceum Superbum began to flower again, and I am thrilled. This plant is over thirty year old and these fragrant and waxy white flowers will open in a few days to last for 3 months. Its ancestor originates from Madagascar as Angraceum Sesquipedale with a foot long spur (Sesquipedale means foot long) containing the nectar that attracts a special moth with a foot long proboscis, the night flying moth "Predicta" that was discovered 40 years after Darwin, studying the pollination of the Christmas Star orchid (Angraceum Sesquipedale) predicted the existence of such an insect. My Angraceum Superbum's nectar spurs are not as long, and they are only about 4" in length. It's very interesting to watch these flowers mature and twist to get their nectar spurs vertical before they fully open. The fragrance at night is out of this world and I am wondering which insect pollinates them in Miami. This plant is late this year as it should begin flowering in December, thus it is called the Christmas Star orchid. I'll post another photo when they fully open in a few days.

Waxy Fragrancy


Chuck Pefley said...

Lovely! I'm always amazed to see and hear about plants that old!

Halcyon said...

I love orchids. I'm glad yours is blooming again.

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