Tuesday, August 6, 2013
Psychilis krugii, a form of the species with no purple color.
Psychilis krugii is an orchid that is endemic of Puerto RIco, it is mostly found in the southwestern part of the island. In the 2012 PR orchid society show there was an area dedicated to native orchids. Among the various species on display there was this plant of Psychilis krugii with white green flowers. The flower lacked the characteristic purple red colors that typical Psy, krugii has on the column and the lip. Typically plants that lack anthocyanins, and therefore are green/white are classified as albas. But taxonomic rules are explicit, you just describe a plant as "var. alba" if there is just a single plant of the type, as this classification implies that there are a number of plants that share the alba characteristic, not just a single clone. When I saw this plant I thought it was a very rare mutation, since I had never seen one on the wild, but since then, thanks to facebook, I have seen photos elsewhere of plants that look identical to this one, including a plant "in situ". I have a botanist friend that is already interested in this orchid so we hopefully we will see a description of it in the future.