Dendrobium daklakense (Photo: Duong Toan)
Dendrobium daklakense N.T.Tich, Schuit. & J.J.Verm.
Currently rated as Data Deficient (DD) according to IUCN Red List criteria, but likely to be endangered.
Grows as an epiphyte in semi-deciduous forest.
Potentially an ornamental.
About this species
Within the huge orchid genus Dendrobium, there is a relatively small group of about 40 species from tropical Asia known as the section Formosae. All species in this section have large, showy flowers with a thick, waxy texture, which are most commonly white with orange markings. These beautiful orchids are much sought-after by collectors and, as a result, most of these species were discovered and described long ago.
It is therefore surprising that one of the most striking species in this section, Dendrobium daklakense, should have remained undetected until very recently. It was discovered in 2009 at an undisclosed locality in the Daklak province of southern Vietnam by a hunter, who passed it on to a local orchid grower, Duong Toan. Kew botanist André Schuiteman, Vietnamese botanist Nguyen Thien Tich and Jaap Vermeulen from NCB Naturalis in the Netherlands joined forces to describe this species, which was formally published in November 2010.