2. b      SECTION EBURNEA

This section was established, distinguishing it from the section Cyperorchis, on the basis of its more widely opening flowers.

This section is characterised by its growth habit, where the pseudobulbs are somewhat slender, and grow and flower indeterminately for two or many years. The few flowered scape is produced from the axis of the leaves, not from the base of the pseudobulb. The flowers usually do not open fully.

2. b. I    Cym eburneum Lindley

Synonym
Cym      syrigodorum
Cym
      eburneum
var. dayi
Cym
      eburneum
var. williamsianum
Cym
      eburneum
var. philbrickianum
Cyperorchis eburnea

Cym eburneum was described by the botanist Lindley in 1847 from a specimen cultivated by Loddiges nursery as said to be from the East Indies.

This is an epiphyte with pseudobulbs 100 x 30 mm. 15 to 17 leaves are produced from each pseudobulb, which reach some 600 mm long. The scape is some 250 mm long, erect, bearing only 1 or 2 flowers. Each flower is large, 80 to 120 mm across, not opening fully, sweetly lilac scented. The tepals are white or faintly pink, the lip white with a bright yellow central and basal patch on the mid lobe, and a bright yellow callus, occasionally with some pale purple-pink spots on the mid lobe. It is amongst the most beautiful of all the cymbidium species and has been used extensively in hybridisation. Its strong fragrance is usually not inherited when it is hybridised. It is distributed from North India, Nepal, North Burma and China, growing from 300 to 1700 metres altitude on trees in warm damp forest in shade. It flowers from early spring to late spring.

2. b. II   Cym parishii Reichb. f.

Synonyms
C
ym eburneum var. parishii
Cyperorchis parishii

This species was discovered in Burma in 1859 by the Reverend Charles Parish who collected a number of plants that were subsequently lost in transit. In 1867 he send two further plants to Messrs Low in England, and a dried flower to the botanist Hooker at Kew from a plant he had cultivated and painted. Hooker considered it to be a variety of Cym eburneum and did not publish this name until 1981. In 1872 Reichenbach examined Parish's dried material, and named it Cym parishii in 1874.

This is probably an epiphyte, with pseudobulbs 115 x 40 mm, not produced annually but growing in an indeterminate fashion for several years. Some 38 to 53 leaves are produced on each pseudobulb, 180 mm long. The scape is about 250 mm long from within the axis of the leaves, bearing 2 to 3 flowers. Each flower is slightly smaller than that of Cym eburneum, not opening fully, scented, The tepals are white, the lip white with a yellow central and basal patch on the mid lobe, and with an orange-yellow callus. There are strong interrupted streaks of purple on the side lobes. Native of Burma, it grows some 1500 metres above sea level, in montane forest, and flowers in early/mid summer.

This species has been lost to cultivation. Very little material has been preserved.

Cym parishii var. sanderae is treated as a separate species Cym sanderae.

2. b. III  Cym roseum J. J, Smith

Synonym
C
yperorchis rosea

This is a rather rare species with a restricted distribution. It resembles Cym eburneum vegetatively, but has distinctive flowers. Described by J. J. Smith in 1905 from plants collected in Java, it has also been found in the high mountains of West Malaysia.

This is a plant that may grow as a terrestrial, lithophyte or epiphyte with pseudobulbs 75 x 20 mm. in size that continues to grow and flower in an indeterminate fashion for 2 to 3 years before a new growth develops. There are about 7 fresh leaves produced at any one time; but a total of about 13 from each pseudobulb. The leaves are 200 to 400 mm long. The scape grows 190 to 300 mm long from the axis of the leaves, erect, producing 2 to 5 flowers on each rachis. The flowers are 50 to 60 mm across, not opening fully, faintly scented. The tepals are pale pink speckled with white, becoming darker or faintly pink-brown with age, sometimes white. The lip is pale pink or white with a bright yellow patch on the base of the mid lobe, and a bright yellow callus. It is native of West Malaysia, Java and Sumatra, growing between 1500 and 2100 metres altitude. It prefers high mountain habitats on exposed rocks or on steep banks, or occasionally low down on trees. It flowers late summer to early winter.

2. b IV   Cym mastersii Griffith ex. Lindley

Synonym
Cym affine
Cym micromeson
Cym mastersii
Cyperorchis mastersii

First described by Lindley in 1845 from specimens flowered by Loddiges in December 1844, its name was attributed to Griffith who had chosen it in honour of Dr Masters of the Botanical Garden in Calcutta, India.

A plant which grows as an epiphyte or lithophyte, it has pseudobulbs which are stem like and hidden amongst the persistant leaf bases, occasionally producing a new growth from near the base. It produces 6 to 17 apical leaves, each of which are 64 to 180 mm long. The scape is 250 to 300 mm long, produced from the axis of the leaves, more or less erect, bearing 5 to 20 closely spaced flowers. Each flower is about 60 mm across, not opening fully, almond scented. The tepals are white or faintly pink, the lip white, usually with a yellow central patch at the base of the mid lobe, and bright yellow callus edges.

It is native of North India, Burma and North Thailand, growing from 900 to 2200 metres above sea level, on trees or rocks in evergreen forest, often in deep shade, in humus, moss or on rotting wood. It flowers mainly in autumn to early winter.


Site established 9th May 1998