Vanilla espondae Soto Arenas 2010 SUBGENUS Xanata SECTION Xanata Photo by © Karremans and The Epidendra Website

Common Name Esponda's Vanilla [Nora Esponda Mexican Administrative assistant to Hagsater Current]

Flower Size 4.8" [12 cm]

Found in northern Colombia near the Rio Magdalena at low elevations as a large sized, hot growing hemi-epiphytic vine with an apparently thin, terete, smooth, olive green stem carrying many, oblanceolate, abruptly acuminate, incurved apically, obtuse, the basal margin revolute, coriaceous-fleshy, shortly petiolate base leaves that blooms on an axillary, short peduculate, rachis congested, to 11 flowered inflorescence.

"It could be allied to V. trigonocarpa, with which it shares the huge, whitish flowers, and bright yellow disc; V. trigonocarpa lacks the papillae and warts on the disc. Other species with similarly adorned lips, like V. helleri A.D.Hawkes or V. insignis Ames, have either smaller flowers or green tepals." Soto Arenas 2010

”This is one of the most beautiful Vanilla species. It has been found in the rainy, Pacific coast of Colombia and on a tributary of Magdalena River. Although is not closely related to any other Vanilla species, it could be related to V. trigonocarpa. It is distinguished by the very large papillae covering the lip apex.” Soto Arenas & Cribb 2010


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; *Lankesteriana 9(3): 281 Dressler 2010 Drawing /photo fide; Lankesteriana 9(3): 355-398 Soto Arenas & Cribb 2010