This section is from the book "The Standard Cyclopedia Of Horticulture Vol2", by L. H. Bailey. See also: Western Garden Book: More than 8,000 Plants - The Right Plants for Your Climate - Tips from Western Garden Experts.
(boat, from the Greek, referring to the shape of the lip). Orchidaceae. Handsome epiphytal, rarely terrestrial orchids, requiring warmhouse conditions.
Stems pseudobulbous or not so: leaves coriaceous, long, rarely short, persistent: sepals and petals sub-equal, labellum usually tri-lobed, adnate to the base of the column; column erect; pollinia 2. - Species 30 and more, tropical or subtropical, found on mountains at high elevations in Asia, and a few species in Africa and Austral.
These are among the most decorative of orchids when in bloom, and are attractive all the time owing to the graceful foliage seen on well-grown specimens. There are now many handsome species and varieties and these in their turn have produced, at the hands of the hybridizer, many fine decorative plants, so that a house of cymbidiums produces flowers most of the time, and these last many weeks in full beauty. There are few orchids whose flowers last so long, and the spikes of bloom, often 2 to 3 feet in length, are useful for decorative purposes of all kinds, either on the plants or cut. The recent species, C. insigne, is the most beautiful of all and has already lent itself to hybridization, so that to the very many known hybrids C. insigne will soon add its influence and coloring. - Cultivated cymbidiums are terrestrial, with thick fleshy roots best contained in pots. A portion of tough fibrous loam should be added to the osmundine, about half of each with plenty of broken charcoal to keep the whole porous. The plants will do well for years without disturbance at the roots, but when this is necessary, great care must be taken not to injure them.
Division is, in fact, very difficult to accomplish when the pots are full of roots, and it is best practice to pot the plant in a larger receptacle if the roots are healthy, washing out loose earth and removing dead portions of roots first. Cymbidiums may be grown in a temperature of 50° as a minimum in winter, must not be subjected to strong sunlight after March, and never allowed to become dry at the roots, as these are more or less active, even in winter. Being terrestrial, weak manure-water may be applied during active growth. Many species thrive well when planted out in large palm and fern houses among rocks arranged in a natural manner, and when the plants are placed so that the flower-spikes are on a level with the vision, they have a charming effect for many weeks when in bloom, and the environment suits them well. Of the few well-marked species, there are many forms that have been collected and when flowered in cultivation, proved distinct. These in some cases have been called new species, but are now being better understood; some prove to be natural hybrids, others are varieties. (E. O. Orpet.) a.
Lindl. stems tufted: leaves distichous at base, 1 or 2 ft. long, linear or lorate, bifid at apices: peduncles not so long as the leaves, few-flowered; flowers about 3 in. across, ivory-white, sometimes tinged with rose; sepals and petals oblong-lanceolate; lip 3-lobed with a golden yellow ridge running down the center. Khasia Hills, at an elevation of 5,000-6,000 ft, B.R. 33:67. B.M. 5126. Gn. 46, p. 398. G.C. III. 35:99. variety Goodsonianum, Hort. Flowers white, with broad rose-purple band down middle of lip. variety Dayanum, Hort. (C Dayanum, Reichb. C. eburneum Dayi, Jenm.). Leaves longer and narrower: lip with a row of purple spots each side of disk.
aa. Flowers not white.
b. Infloresence arching or erect.
c. Sepals and petals veined with red, brown or purple.
d. Ground-color of sepals and petals not white.
E. Middle lobe of lip purple-maroon, margined yellow.
Lowianum, Reichb. f. Pseudobulbs oblong: leaves 2-3 ft. long, linear-acute, recurved: racemes many-flowered; flowers about 20 in number, 3-4 in. across; sepals and petals oblong-lanceolate (lateral ones sub-falcate), greenish yellow marked with brown; lateral lobes of lip yellowish; midlobe reflexed, purple-maroon, margined with yellow. Burma. Gn. 48, p. 263. Gng. 5:73. A.F. 34:1089. R.B. 30:276. variety Mandaianum, Hort. (C. Mandaianum, Hort.), has yellow flowers
ee. Middle lobe of lip yellow, spotted.
Wall. Fig. 1185. Flowers dull purple (brownish, or yellowish green striped with purple); sepals and petals oblong, the petals narrow and shorter; midlobe of Up reflexed, yellow, spotted with red; lateral lobes yellowish green. Nepal. B.M. 4844. P.M. 12:241.
Traceyanum, Hort. Pseudobulbs and foliage as in C. giganteum: racemes 3-4 ft. long, ascending, 15-20-flowered; flowers 4-5 in. across; sepals and petals greenish yellow, lined with crimson; middle lobe of lip oblong, reflexed, crisped, cream-white, crimson-spotted. Burma. C.O. 4. R.B. 29:25. - By some considered a natural hybrid between C. grandiflorum and C. giganteum.
dd. Ground-color of sepals and petals white, flushed rose. insigne, Rolfe (C. Sanderi, Hort. C. insigne Sdn-deri, Hort.). Leaves up to 3 ft. long: infloresence long, ascending; flowers rosy white; sepals and petals elliptic; lip marked with lines of purple dots, the middle lobe short, obtuse, emarginate; disk yellow. C.O. 10. B.M. 8312. 0.1911: 64. R.B. 33:53. R.H. 1907:496. G.C. III. 37:115.
cc. Sepals and petals not veined. tigrinum, Parish. Leaves oblong-lanceolate: peduncles slender, 3-6-flowered; sepals and petals linear-oblong, acute, green, spotted at base; petals often paler and with more spots than the sepals; lip with yellow, red-brown striped lateral lobes; midlobe white, transversely streaked with purple. Burma. B.M. 5457. A.G. 22:715. grandifidrum, Griff. (C. Hookerianum, Reichb. f.). Leaves about 2 ft. long, acute: peduncle arching above, erect at base; flowers from 6-12, large, sepals and petals oblong, greenish; lip yellow, spotted with purple. Sik-kim. B.M. 5574.
bb. Infloresence pendulous. pendulum, Swartz. The leathery leaves distichous, 2-3 ft. long, broadly linear: flowers yellowish; side lobes and midlobe of lip rose-color; the disk more or less white with yellow crests; sepals and petals narrowly oblong, with a purple median line. E. Indies.
(C. pendulum, Lindl.). Leaves ensiform: raceme many-flowered; sepals and petals linear-oblong, obtuse, dull yellow, sometimes with a reddish median line; lateral lobes of lip crimson; midlobe white, tipped with crimson. Malaysia. variety atropurpureum, Hort. Leaves narrower, racemes longer, with larger flowers: sepals and petals purplish, front lobe of lip white, spotted with purple. Borneo.
C. Alexdnderi, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneo-Lowianum X C. insigne. - C. aloifolium, Swartz. Racemes many-flowered, arched; flowers pale purple, black-striped. E. Indies. - C. Ballianum, Hort. Natural hybrid between C. eburneum X C. Mastersii. - C. Colmanae, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneo-Lowianum X C. eburneum Dayanum. - C. Craveni&num, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum XC. Traceyanum. - C. Devonianum, Paxt, Racemes many-flowered, pendulous; sepals and petals greenish or reddish yellow, spotted or lined with purple; lip purple. India. C.O. 8. - C. eburneo-giganteum, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneum X C. giganteum. - C. eburneo-Lowianum, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneum X C. Lowianum. - C. ensifolium, Swartz. Leaves ensiform, acute: racemes many-flowered; flowers greenish yellow, purple-veined; sepals and petals linear-oblong, acute; lip spotted. India. Japan. B.M. 1751. - C. erylhrostylum, Rolfe. Sepals and petals white; lip yellowish white, lined red-purple; column crimson. Annam. B.M. 8131. G.C. III. 40:286. - C. galtonense, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum X C. Traceyanum. - C. Gammieanum, Rolfe. Supposed to be a natural hybrid between C. giganteum x C. elegans.
G.C. III. 38:427. - C. glebelandsense, Hort. Hybrid between C. Schrcederi XC. insigne. - C. Gottianum, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneum XC. insigne Sanderi. Flowers white, the sepals with a faint greenish tinge, the lip blotched with ruby-purple. G.C. III. 49:180. - C. Holfordianum, Hort. Hybrid between C. grandiflorum x C. eburneum. - C. Holmesii, Hort, Hybrid between C. Mastersii X C. giganteum. - C. Huttonii, Hook. f.=Grammangis. - C. langleyense, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum X C. Devonianum. Sepals and petals greenish brown, the lip marked with reddish brown. G.C. III. 49:146. - C. Lindleyi=(?). - C. longifolium, Don. Leaves linear, acuminate: racemes suberect; flowers about 12; sepals and petals green, striped brownish purple, the sepals oblong, the dorsal one broader and incurved; lip with the lateral lobes purple-lined, the middle lobe and disk white. Himalayas. G.M. 54:472. - C. lowgrinum, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum xC. tigrinum. - C. Lowi-grandiflorum, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum X C. grandiflorum. - C. Ldwi-Md&tersii, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum xC. Mastersii. - C. Mastersii, Griff.=Cyperorchis. - C. Pa-riahii variety Sanderae, Rolfe (C. Sanderae, Hort.). Sepals and petals ivory-white, the front lobe of lip heavily blotched with crimson-purple, the crests orange-yellow. Burma. G.C. III. 35:338. - C. Paulwelsii, Hort.=C. insigne xC. Lowianum concolor. -C. pumilum, Rolfe. Scape 4-6 in. long, many-flowered; sepals light reddish brown; lip white with red-brown spots; disk and keels bright yellow.
China. - C. rhodochilum, Rolfe. A striking plant: raceme many-flowered; sepals and petals pale green; the latter with darker green spots; lip with the lateral lobes pale green, margined crimson, the middle lobe obcordate, crimson, with a yellow central band which is green-spotted. Madagascar. B.M. 7932-3. O.R. 14:209. A.F. 18:810. G.C. III. 37:378. Gn. 61, p. 383. - C. rose-fieldinse, Hort. Hybrid between C. Traceyanum X C. grandiflorum. -C. Sandersonii==Ansellia. - C. Schrcederi, Rolfe. Petals and sepals lanceolate, green, lined and dotted with reddish brown; lip light yellow striped with brown. Annam. - C. Simonsianum, Ruiz & Prantl. Sepals and petals grayish white, streaked blood-red in the center; lip white, streaked blood-red, the middle lobe revo-lute, with a yellow blotch. Assam. B.M. 7863. - C. Steppeanum, Pynaert. Hybrid between Cyperorchis Mastersii X Cymbidium giganteum. Sepals and petals yellowish green, the lip white marked brown and yellow. R.B. 36:397. - C. Veitchii, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneum X C. Lowianum. Flowers fragrant, about 5 in. across; sepals and petals white, tinted yellow; lip white, tinted yellow, with a large V-shaped purple-crimson spot on the middle lobe.
G.C. III. 47:407. O.R. 12:369; 16:325. C.O.I. - C. viriscens, Lindl. Sepals 'and petals greenish, the lip yellow, red-blotched. Japan. - C. Wiganianum, Hort. Hybrid between C. eburneum X C. Traceyanum. - C. Wilsonii, Hort. Sepals and petals green, indistinctly marked at base with lines of reddish dots; lip cream, the lateral lobes lined with sepia-brown and reddish markings on the front lobe. China. G.C. III. 35:157. - C. Winnianum, Hort. Hybrid between C. giganteumXC. eburneum. Racemes 10-15-flowered; flowers about 4 in. across; sepals and petals ivory-white; lip ivory-white, spotted with crimson. O.R. 1:361; 12:369. G.M. 51:179. - C. Woodhamsianum, Hort. Hybrid between C. Lowianum X C. Veitchii. G. 30:107. - C. woodlandense, Hort. Hybrid between C. Traceyanum X C. Mastersii. - C. Zaleskianum, Hort. Natural hybrid between C. giganteum X C. grandiflorum.
George V. Nash.†