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January at the Botanical Garden, Part 3: Orchids and Butterflies

February 10, 2011

Part 1: Snow

Part 2: Camellias

They didn’t have an orchid show this winter, as they did the last couple of years, but a few orchids are always there:


Epidendrum ciliare (A pain to photograph, by the way - nearly impossible to get the camera to focus on that feathery flower!)

Phaius tankervillae

I don’t know what this is – some sort of Ludisia? There’s an L. discolor just to the right of it – but it sure is pretty! I want!
Edit: identified by Mr_Subjunctive as Macodes

Lots of Phalaenopsis – must have been over a dozen of those boring varieties you get in every store…

I know, I know, we've all seen to many to be excited about them, but I liked the water drops on this one. And the colour isn't too bad.

… but also some species:


Phalaenopsis schilleriana. Not the best picture, but I like those leaves. Can't they breed hybrids with leaves like that?

Phalaenopsis pantherina. The flowers weren't much to look at - small, and just one on the end of each stem...

... but the stems were interesting. Easily half a metre long, winding all around the plant, and none of them seemed to have any plans to stop producing flowers. (My camera and I had some small disagreement about what to focus on here - I was forced to put my hand behind the stalk so it'd focus on THAT rather than the background. Frustrating! Getting a picture of a stem in its entire length - forget it!)

Phalaenopsis gigantea

My hand isn't very big, but that's still a pretty large (and pretty ugly*) leaf!


Phalaenopsis pallens

Even if they didn’t have an orchid show, they still had a butterfly show to attract visitors at a time of year when little is to be seen outside. Though I didn’t see many interesting ones – no beautiful shimmering blue Morphos (my favourites)  this year .


... the birds and the b...utterflies?


* Is anyone else amused by the phrase ‘pretty ugly’? German has a whole lot of (untranslatable) contradictory expressions like that, and I never get tired of pointing them out in the middle of a conversation.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. February 10, 2011 03:28

    I think the Ludisia-like plant is a Macodes something. I’ve only ever seen them for sale around here from orchid specialists, and even then I don’t see them for sale often.

    • February 10, 2011 12:09

      I’ve never seem them for sale at all, but then I don’t know any orchid specialists either.

  2. Ginny Burton permalink
    February 10, 2011 14:00

    I’m most impressed that no one reprimanded you for touching the plants! Around here, one is constantly reminded not to get too close.

    • February 10, 2011 14:20

      Never happened to me, but then I’m usually there when there are few other people around, including employees, so there’s little chance I’ll be seen. There are some signs saying not to touch the plants because they’ve been sprayed with pesticides, but since they’re always up, and I’m pretty sure they don’t spray that often, I’m not too worried.
      And even if someone saw me, I know many of the gardeners, so I’m sure they’d not rise too much of a fuss about me briefly touching something to make it easier to flower photograph.

  3. Ginny Burton permalink
    February 10, 2011 16:33

    “…touching something to make it easier to flower.” Wow! You have magic hands! (I know it was a typo, but it really made me laugh!)

    If you don’t mind a personal question, where did you learn English? I would never have guessed that you weren’t a native speaker, except for the fact that your grammar is much, much better than that of most Americans (and English, too. I once heard Prince Andrew use a nominative pronoun as to object of a preposition).

    • February 11, 2011 01:00

      … oh wait, I don’t actually have a desk. *headtable*
      I remember being kind of distracted while I wrote that, but I don’t remember by what…

      As for learning English, I mostly owe that to Harry Potter. When I was 14, my mother gave me the first part in English – it was a struggle at first, but I was a stubborn kid, and in the end, it more than made up for the crappy English teacher I’d had for the last two years. I even started thinking in English, which just got worse – or better, depending on how you look at it – when I read the rest of the series (those parts that were out by then, anyway), and then other books in English. Thinking in English, writing in English (stories, diary…), dreaming in English even, bored out of my mind in English class… and on the internet, I mostly read/write in English. It’s gone so far that I’m actually more comfortable writing in English than in German!


  1. January at the Botanical Garden, Part 2: Camellias « Letters & Leaves

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