image Coelogyne Kirribilli Ray


Coelogyne Kirribilli Ray is a (2014) primary Coelogyne hybrid orchid and part of my project to breed a wide variety of Coelogyne hybrids simply to demonstrate that they are easy to breed. This one was pollinated 24.11.2009 and flasked 25.9.2010 - about 10 months in the pod. After deflasking 4.10.2011 (about a year) it first flowered on 2.10.2014 (about three years from deflasking). These seedlings have proved really robust and hardy at all times in an intermediate environment (down to around 80C in a glasshouse).

There are two variations labeled as Coelogyne marmorata. One is a slightly smaller plant with darker smaller flowers. The species used as the  pollen parent in this hybrid is a larger plant with larger flowers that are held more above the foliage. This pollen parent flower displays more white areas and the marbled area inside the flower lobes (from whence the name marmorata comes) is a much lighter shade of orange/brown.

As the flower bud develops it has a rich apple green, indicating that the petals and sepals have inherited the same green from the pollen parent. On the pod parent these are an olive/brown green so this is not such a surprise. The areas of white on the lip have come through very strongly from both parents but especially from Coelogyne marmorata. The pollen parent's brown marbling patterns on the inside of the side lobes have passed on very strongly and clearly and can also be seen faintly from the outside of the lobes. The column is green and has the distinct orange tip from Coelogyne marmorata. The flower has inherited the downward-facing droopy habit from the pod parent, Coelogyne speciosa, but the flower itself is more open, as is the case with Coelogyne marmorata.

Basically, there are five keels. Two very distinct keels with fused projections run the full length of the lip from the throat to well out onto the frontal lobe. On the outside of these, two more keels run almost the same length but are smaller and their continuity is broken in places. the fifth keel is a small remnant running from the throat to about halfway along the side lobes.

Negatives: The flower is a downward facing Coelogyne speciosa variation and needs to be placed in an elevated position so as to see up into the flowers. It will need warm conditions as both its parents originate from the tropics.

Rating: ♦♦♦♦ The sharp flower patterns and crispness of Coelogyne marmorata make this new hybrid a perky, bright and attractive flower which blooms over many weeks.

I like Coelogyne marmorata very much and rate it highly. However, it only flowers once a year during spring, whereas this Coelogyne speciosa parent flowers almost continuously. As the hybrid has developed it has shown a long flowering season - obviously inherited from Coelogyne speciosa.

Registration: Registration with the RHS as Coelogyne Kirribilli Ray was recorded in October 2014. The plant is named after my father, Ray Dawes, who was the owner/manager of 'Kirribilli' and built this farming property into a formidable operation through hard work and the ability to continually implement modern technology and best practice.

During his lifetime, farming practices changed from horses to tractors, trucks, electricity, aerial fertilising, chemical usage, electronics, and modern marketing practices. It was a period of huge technological change. He moved with ease through these times. Ahead of his time, he established areas of tree plantings and re-vegetation as well as preserving areas of natural vegetation. A testimony to his love of the animals in his life is the fact that he kept around forty Clydesdale horses on the farm long after their useful life until they died peacefully of old age.

Varieties: None known.

Hybrids: None registered

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