Friday, February 1, 2013

Stanhopea connata

This beautiful stanhopea from my collection just finished flowering this season and it's another stanhopea with colorful and interesting history.

Stanhopea connata was first described and documented in 1850's from the plant collected by famous orchid collector Joseph Warsewicz on his last voyage to Northern Peru. The living plant reached collection of Kunst and Matthieu in Germany where it was studied and called new stanhopea species. At the later stage it ended in herbarium in Berlin. In March 1943 after intense Allied bombing raid Berlin's herbarium was totally destroyed by fire, together with all plant material. What we know now about this specie due to huge contribution by various collectors, botanists and plant historians.

Stanhopea connata ( connate, connected) named this way due to the structure of the column connected with the basis of the lip in a unique for a stanhopea way. It grows along the eastern slopes of Andes in Peru. Plants often grow directly above open water, which gives clue to their sucessful cultivation.

The plant itself is of medium size and it displays beautiful orange colored blooms with many marks on the petals with darker rounder middle and the scent is very complex and multi-layered. One can smell many spices and herbs, heavy aroma's and almost buttered fragrances. It's one of those scents that is so difficult to describe that comes in waves and spending a few minutes with a flowering plant gives huge feast to the senses not easily forgotten.

Another special stanhopea  for anyone who appreciates these orchids and I am delighted being able to see this beauty in bloom this season.

Stanhopea connata
Stanhopea connata