!Oncidium altissimum [Jacq.] Swartz 1800 SECTION Oblongata

Inflorescence Photos courtesy of Richard Gautier and His Guadeloupe Orchid Page

Common Name The Extremely High Oncidium

Flower Size 1" [2.5 cm]

Found in the Lesser Antilles Islands of Martinique, Trinidad and St. Vincent at altitudes of sea-level to 200 meters as a medium sized, pseudobulbous, hot growing epiphyte with clustered to ovoid to suborbicular, laterally compressed, rugose with age pseudobulbs enveloped basally by several imbricating leaf-bearing sheaths and carrying 2 apical, oblong-ligulate, acute, conduplicate below into the petiole-like base leaves that blooms in the spring on a basal, arcuate, branched, 6' [180 cm] long inflorescence that has many, glossy flowers.

It is one of the earliest orchids cultivated at Kew Royal Botanical Gardens and was brought in by the same Captain Bligh who at a latter date survived the Mutiny on the HMS Bounty in the Pacific. This species is often found in conjunction with ants and may benefit from their presence.

This is an easy plant to grow either potted or mounted if given bright light and regular waterings

Synonyms Cymbidium altissimum Sw. 1799; *Epidendrum altissimum Jacq. 1760; Epidendrum crispum Lam. 1783; Oncidium forkelii Scheidw. 1842; Xeilyathum altissimum (Jacq.) Raf. 1837

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Bonplandia Rchb.f 1856; Symbolae Antillanae Vol VI Orchidaceae Urban 1909; Flora of Jamaica Fawcett & Rendle 1910 drawing ok; Die Orchideen Schlechter 1915; Atlas des Orchidees Cultivees Constantin 1920 drawing good; Das Pflanzanreich Regni Vegetabilis Conspectus Odontoglossum/Oncidium Kranzlin 1922; Das Pflanzanreich Regni Vegetabilis Conspectus Odontoglossum/Oncidium Kranzlin 1922 as Oncidium forkelii; Flore Descriptive des Antilles Francaises H. Stehle 1939 drawing good; AOS Bulletin Vol 27 No 5 1958 drawing; Encyclopedia of Cultivated Orchids Hawkes 1965; Flora of the Lesser Antilles Garay & Sweet 1974 drawing fide; Orchids of Venezuela ; An Illustrated Field Guide Vol 2 Dunsterville & Garay 1979 drawing ok; Orchid Digest Vol 44 No 2 1980 photo hmm; An Introdution to the Orchids of Mexico Wiard 1987 photo no = Lopharius lurida; AOS Bulletin Vol 61 No 10 1992 photo; An Orchid Flora Of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands Ackerman 1995 drawing fide; Rudolf Schlechter Die Orchideen Lieferung 33-6 1997 drawing good/photo ok; The Pictoral Encyclopedia of Oncidium Zelenko 2002; AOS Bulletin Vol 73 No 8 2004; Orquideologia Vol. 23 No 2 2004; Orchid Species Culture: Oncidium, Bakers 2006;

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