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 Maxillaria subsp. var.  
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[[]] > Maxillaria var. ,

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Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Maxillaria (Latin, maxilla, jaw; referring to the mentum). Orchidaceae. Mostly pseudobulbous epiphytic orchids, resembling lycaste in general appearance.

Rhizomes short or long, creeping or erect, and clothed with distichous lvs.: pseudobulbs clustered or scattered on the rhizome, 1-2-lvd. or densely distichophyllous at the apex of the rhizome: lvs. leathery or subfleshy, plicate or plane and keeled, distichous: sepals subequal, free from each other but united with the foot of the column and forming a projecting mentum; petals similar or smaller; labellum 3-lobed, movably articulated to the foot of the column; lateral lobes erect; middle lobe with longitudinal callosities; the scape arises apparently from the base of the pseudobulb, on the very young leafy axis, but lower down than the corresponding new growth; pollinia 4, seated on a broad, scale-like stipe. — Over 100 species, dispersed at various altitudes in Mex., Brazil and the W. Indies. About 15 species are offered by dealers in Amer. Many of these have small fls. and are of value only in collections. They are, however, easily grown, and blossom profusely. Among those given below, the large white-fld. M. grandiflora and M. venusta, and the white and purple M. Sanderiana are probably the best species. The distichous arrangement of the lvs. distinguishes this genus from Lycaste. For M. Harrisoniae and M . tetragona, see Lycaste.

Maxillarias are of easy culture, and can be grown under various methods of treatment with fair success. The best compost consists of clean peat fiber taken from the several species of Osmunda, and live sphagnum, both chopped rather fine and well mixed together. After the receptacle is half filled with clean drainage and the plant properly placed, the compost should be pressed firmly in around the roots, interspersing it with nodules of charcoal. In their native habitats, many of the fine-rooted species grow on rocks and trees with very little compost attached. The base of the pseudobulbs or rhizome should rest on a convex surface raised a little above the rim of the pot when finished. Maxillarias delight in a cool, moist, shaded location at all seasons; the winter temperature should not exceed 58° F. by night and not over 60° or 65° by day. During summer they must be grown as cool as possible with ventilation at all seasons when admissible, especially in wet heavy weather. Water should be given in abundance while the plants are growing and not too sparingly when at rest, as the plants are subject to spot if kept too dry. Weak liquid cow-manure is beneficial occasionally during root-action.—Maxillaria has two recognized horticultural groups or sections; viz., caulescent and stemless. The caulescent section embraces M. tenuifolia, M. variabilis and kindred species, having scandent rhizomes and often obscure flowers. These should all be grown under pot culture and afforded supports to climb on, such as small cylinders or rafts of open woodwork with a little compost worked in the openings, or osmunda rhizomes supported obliquely in the pots to which the plants can attach themselves as they grow upward, and thus be supplied with moisture for the young roots. To the stemless section belong those with clustered pseudobulbs, as M. grandiflora, M. luteo-alba, M. picta, M. Sanderiana and M. venusta. Some of these have very showy flowers. Nearly all do best under pot culture. M. Sanderiana and others are exceptions, however, and grow best under basket culture, not too much compost and an airy position. Demand for maxillarias not being great, the market usually relies on new importations, but stock may also be increased by division between the pseudobulbs as the plants start new action.

M.abbreviata, Reiehb. f. Fin. solitary, on long bracted peduncles, copper-colored. O. 1911: 100.— M. Binotii. De Wild. Peduncles solitary or geminate: fls. yellow; lip densely purple-dotted toward the middle. Brazil.—M. dichroma, Rolfe. Related to M. venusta, but the petals suffused on the lower half with light pinkish purple, the lip margined, with name color; sepals white.—-M. fletcheriana, Rolfe. A new species intermediate between M. Sanderiana and M. grandiflora in the form and size of fl.: fls. large, cream-white, with purple lines; lip yellow. Peru.—M. fracliflexa, Reichb. f. Sepals yellow, bronzy-tinged, twisted; petals cream-colored, twisted and coiled, warty-margined; lip white, purple-marked. Ecuador. G.C. III. 31:359. — M. funerea, Lindl. "Fls with broad purple-brown sepals and petals, and a darker shining lip, having a broad crest." Brazil. — M. Fuerstenbergiana, Schlecht. Fls. large, snow-white, front part of sepals orange-yellow; middle lobe of lip bordered with red. Peru. O. 1912:116, desc. — M. Henniseana, Schlecht. Fls. yellowish white, fragrant. Colombia. O. 1912: 117, desc. — M. incarnata, offered by Lager & Hurrell, a trade name only. — M . iridifolia, Reiehb. f. Lvs. distichous, equitant, lanceolate, acuminate; sepals triangular; lip ligulate-pandurate. Colombia. — M. Johniana, Kranzl. Scape 1-fld. ; fls. widely expanded, white; sepals and petals deep lilac in upper half; lip yellowish, edged with lilac. Peru. — M. phanicanthera Rodrig. Fls. white or pale yellow, dotted with purple. Brazil. — M. pulla, Lind. & Reiehb. f. Plant small: fls. straw-yellow, striped with red-brown. Colombia. M. pusilla. Rolfe. Scapes solitary, short; sepals and petals brownish green; lip dark purple, shiny. — M. scurrilis, Rolfe. Sepals and petals elongated, narrow, curved, dark-spotted, 5-6 in. long. G.C. III 28:65; 32:243. 245.

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.



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