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Pseudobulbs

August 3, 2011

In yesterday’s blog on the scooter orchid Thecostele alata (Orchidaceae) I showed the flowers only. What if you see the orchid off the flowering season – is there a way to recognize it?

Yes, the orchid has pseudobulbs, nutrient storage organs, something many other orchids lack. In this case the pseudobulbs are not segmented transversally like in many Dendrobium, and they are adorned with prominent ridges. The pseudobulb has a different shade of green than the leaf. During the period of dormancy when each pseudobulb has shed its one leaf, there is an ‘eye’ or leaf scar.

Text & Photo Eric Danell

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