Native to Panama
Edited 9 May 2007
This is a newly named Stanhopea species, published in Orquideologia, v.21, No.1, 1999, p.61-67. It was previously identified as Stanhopea platyceras f. gunnii Jenny. See
The flower is pure yellow and the form of the lip is very close to that of Stanhopea platyceras, deeply saccate with broad horns.
Jenny writes: "If you put a platyceras in alcohol, it looks very much the same but the hypochile is a bit shorter and broader." The type plants were "collected" (purchased in the weekly plant market) in El Valle de Anton, Panama. The species is named in honor of Andres Maduro, a Panamanian orchidist and owner of Finca Dracula.
Photo at left from a plant exhibited by Maduro at the Latin American Orchid Congress in Quito, Ecuador, February 2004. It received an Award of Merit from the American Orchid Society (AM/AOS).
This is one of the newest Stanhopea species published. It was described by Dodson and Dressler in 1998 in the journal Orquideologia, 21(1): 61-67. It was previously identified as Stanhopea platyceras forma gunnii Jenny.
Some years ago I (RJ) received from Ron Parsons (of San Francisco) an unclear slide showing a pure yellow Stanhopea collected by the late Henry Butcher. It was collected somewhere in northern Colombia, very close to the border of Panama and named Stanhopea platyceras alba. I wasn’t able to identify the species, so I attached the slide to Ron’s letter and forgot it.
Years later, Ron Parsons again sent me some slides of a yellow, unspotted Stanhopea for determination, it seemed to be an entirely unspotted form of Stanhopea platyceras, again collected somewhere close to the border of Panama in northern Colombia. This plant was grown and flowered in the fine species collection of Howard Gunn in Sacramento, California USA. A colour photograph of this plant, taken by Howard, appears on page 49 in The Astonishing Stanhopeas by Barney Greer. Later on I also received pickled flowers and the comparison with blooms of Stanhopea platyceras showed that it could be an anthocyanin-free form of this species. At this point it was not clear whether the two plants are exceptions or part of an entire population, so the plant was described in 1997 as forma and not as a variety in Die Orchidee, named after Howard Gunn.
In 1998, a third plant was subsequently described as Stanhopea maduroi by Dodson and Dressler in Orquideologia. This plant was collected in 1985 by Andres Maduro, a Panamanian orchidist, in El Valle in Panama and described by the authors as a species in his honour. The comparison shows very clearly that Stanhopea maduroi is absolutely identical with the concept of Stanhopea platyceras f.gunnii. The flower is pure yellow, the form of the lip is very close to Stanhopea platyceras, deeply saccate with broad horns. If you put a flower of S. platyceras in alcohol, it looks very much the same as S. maduroi but the hypochile is a bit shorter and broader. After careful comparison of the available material I think Dodson and Dressler are correct in treating this plant at specific level and not as an aberrant colour form of Stanhopea platyceras.
Panama and Colombia. This species has been collected once in El Valle de Anton in Panama and twice in northern Colombia, close to the border of Panama. With only three clones known, it is arguably one of the rarest Stanhopea species.
Howard Gunn grows this species in his heated greenhouse, which does not drop below 16ºC in winter, and tries to keep the plants below 32ºC in summer. Howard gave David Banks a division of this plant in early 1998, and tells me that he grows it in sphagnum moss. From late autumn til spring, it is grown in his heated glasshouse (min 12ºC) whilst it is transferred to the shadehouse (under 70% shade) for the warmer months. High temperatures do not seem to worry this species as long as there is high humidity and circulating fresh air. In Sydney, Australia, it flowers in December (early summer).
Plant grown and photographed by David Banks.
Stanhopea Augres (connata x maduroi) -- originally reg. Q3 1998 with the parents (connata x platyceras) by the Eric Young Orchid Foundation (Jersey). However, in the endnotes to the list of Registrations received by RHS Oct-Dec 2006, published as Orchid Review Supplement Vol. 115, the EYOF said that the pollen parent was Stan. maduroi, not platyceras.
Stanhopea maduroi '___' AM/AOS, awarded Feb. 2004 at the Latin American Orchid Congress in Quito, Ecuador.
Rudolf Jenny (Dec. 2003) "The Genus Stanhopea. Part 1: S. anfracta to S. napoensis," in: Caesiana no. 21, Supplement. 200 color photos, 160 p., Italian/English, covers 32 species.