Angraecums

Angraecums
Angraecum Longidale

Friday, March 27, 2015

Angraecum Longidale

       [RE-WRITE: this post is a re-write/update replacing the "Angraecum Memoria Mark Aldridge" post dated March 3, 2015.  Some of the text has been copied to here for an explanation of the re-write.  The Angcm. Memoria Mark Aldridge post has been deleted.]

       The RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) lists the actual parents of Angraecum Memoria Mark Aldridge as follows.  The seed parent is Angcm. sesquipedale and the pollen parent as Angcm. superbum.  Angcm. superbum is a sub-species of Angcm. eburneum.  The plants that I have obtained are tagged as such; but the parentage on the tag reads Angcm. sesquipedale X Angcm. longicalcar.  This difference in parentage is the reason behind the re-write.
       The originator of the Angraecum hybrids was Fred Hillerman.  He did not register either cross because at the time each pollen parent was classified in one name (Angraecum eburneum ssp superbum var. longicalcar).  Only one could be registered and recognized so he decided not to register either.  However, the hybrid with a parentage of Angcm. sesquipedale X Angcm. superbum was registered by Connie Timm with the RHS in late 1993 as  Angcm. Memoria Mark Aldridge.  This name as been associated with both the Angraecum superbum version and the Angraecum longicalcar version. 
       After seeing the blooms on the plants that I had obtained; I was able to compare them to the plant and the blooms that were awarded in 2000 at the Fort Lauderdale orchid show.  The flowers from 2000 were Veitchii type blooms that suffered from "twisty flower", a common issue with some hybrid Angraecums that are crossed where one resupinate and the other non-resupinate.  The flowers tend to open facing down with the nectary/spur pointing in just about any direction.
       In recent years, the RHS has started making certain sub-species and variations their own distinctive species.  With this now in play, the hybrid created by crossing Angcm. sesquipedale and Angcm. longicalcar can be registered as a new hybrid.  As of March 25, 2015, the RHS has officially registered this cross as Angcm. Longidale (a part of each parents name combined to create the hybrid name; the name that Fred Hillerman initially wanted to use when creating the hybrid in 1978).

Angraecum Longidale

       Angraecum Longidale will be a large showy plant.  It can reach a height of nearly 48 inches (120cm) and be just as wide.  New plants can start developing at the base of the plant; sometimes as many as three or four at about the time the plant blooms for the first time.  Keep in mind that this will vary with each plant.  Because of the size of this plant, it is best to pot it (terra cotta) or place in a cedar/plastic basket (plastic usually is best, it will not break down over time).  The container should be large enough to accommodate the plant as it becomes a specimen.
       The root system will be thick.  They can be up to a quarter on an inch (.5cm) and most form at the base of the plant.  If undisturbed, the length can be just about unlimited.  Neither of the parents like the root system messed with, the same goes with this hybrid.  Using a non-organic medium of large material is best.  Chunks of red lava rock, charcoal and large clay pellets (1 1/2 inch [4cm]) will give ample drainage, plenty of air for the roots to breath and a good amount of room for advancement of the root system.  Both parents are considered warm growing and enjoy a substantial amount of water from mid spring into mid fall.  If temperatures are above 90 degrees F (32 degrees C), I water the plants every other day, other wise I will water every three days.  During the cool months, the watering is cut back to every four or five days.  Even though the watering gets cut back in cooler months; the plant is actively growing.
       Do not let water set in the leaf axils, it can cause the root system to rot.  Fertilizer should be applied every 7 - 10 days and use of a systemic fungicide is encouraged every 30 days.  Keep a topical fungicide on hand for use between the monthly treatments.

 Angraecum Longidale with the twist in pedicle allowing the flower's lip to be
non-resupinate and the nectary/spur to hang down.

       Angraecum Longidale receives very bright light but filtered.  In early morning hours until about 11am, the plant can take direct sunlight.  When starting with a plant that is a year or two away from blooming, gradually introduce it to the brighter light.  Seedlings should be given a medium light until they are about four inches (10.2cm).