Iris Cymbidium
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Iris Cymbidium
P Native Photo: Amber Srivastava
Common name: Iris Cymbidium
Botanical name: Cymbidium iridioides    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)
Synonyms: Cymbidium giganteum, Iridorchis gigantea

Iris Cymbidium is a large sized, cool to cold growing, orchid growing on trees, and sometimes on rocks. It has elongate-ovoid, bilaterally compressed pseudobulbs enveloped basally by distichous, persistent leaf bases and carrying 4 to 7, narrowly lanceshaped to linear-lanceshaped, pointed, mid-green leaves, 6-11 cm. Flowers are borne in a nearly erect or horizontal, 1.5-3 ft long, 4-20-flowered raceme, enveloped by scarious sheaths and triangular floral bracts. Flowers are fragrant, 9-10 cm across, flower-stalk and ovary 4.0-4.5 cm; sepals and petals yellowish green, with 7-9 brownish or reddish brown longitudinal stripes; lip yellowish, with reddish brown stripes on lateral lobes and similarly colored mottling on mid-lobe. Sepals are narrowly obovate-oblong, tip pointed. Petals are slightly sickle shaped, narrowly ovate-oblong, 35-46 x 7-9 mm, not twisted, tip pointed; lip ovate-triangular, slightly shorter than petals, 3-lobed; lateral lobes shortly fringed with hairs; mid-lobe strongly recurved, margin erose and wavy. Column is arcuate, 2.5-3.0 cm. Iris Cymbidium is found in the Himalayas, from Kumaun to Bhutan, NE India, N. Burma, at altitudes of 1800-2800 m. Flowering: August-December.

Identification credit: Amber Srivastava Photographed in BSI, Dehradun.

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