Coelogyne Kirribilli Danielle is another new (2014) primary Coelogyne hybrid plant. A primary hybrid is one made by cross-fertilising two species plants. It was pollinated by Don Chesher of Canberra, a long time Coelogyne enthusiast. Sowing and flasking was done by Bill Miles of Orchid Species Plus, a large orchid business in Victoria, Australia. When deflasking, Don took the highly recommended procedure of distributing a number of the seedlings to friends as a method of insurance - not having all one's eggs in the same basket! The above pictures are of one of these that was in my care. I have been able to return this plant to Don, its rightful owner. I have also seedlings of the same cross made by myself. These seedlings will now happily bear the above name of Coelogyne Kirribilli Danielle.

This new hybrid is very eye-catching with an upward facing flower of green sepals and petals and a stunning dark chocolate lip. The chocolate colouring from the pod parent almost completely covers both inside and outside the lip with only a vestige of pale white left on the very tip of the lip. The splashes of brown over a whitish background on the inside of the lip of Coelogyne assamica have been replaced by this solid colouring of chocolate from Coelogyne usitana.

While Coelogyne usitana's chocolate may have dominated the hybrid, its white sepals and petals have submitted to the green colouring from Coelogyne assamica.

The sepals and petals are narrower than the pod parent (both parents have fairly narrow petals). The colour of the column has been compromised in colour and is a fairly bright orange/brown compared to the dark chocolate column of Coelogyne usitana and the pale column of Coelogyne assamica.

A really desirable feature of the hybrid is the upright flowering habit passed on from Coelogyne assamica and a spike that is a little closer to simultaneously opening compared the the very slow sequential flowering of Coelogyne usitana.

The 8 cm wide flower is a little smaller than Coelogyne usitana but larger than its pollen parent, Coelogyne assamica. The flower spike emerges from the top of a developing psuedo-bulb as with both parents.

Negatives: It remains to be seen if the flowers are going to stay nicely visible above the foliage as the plant matures. Coelogyne assamica is very attractive but the flowers can be partly hidden by the leaves.

Both parents are warm to hot growing and this hybrid will need protection and possibly heat in cold environments.

Rating: ♦♦♦

Registration: Registration with the RHS as Coelogyne Danielle was recorded in September 2014. It is named after Don's daughter Danielle.

Varieties: None known.

Hybrids: None registered

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