Researcher from LIPI, Destario Metusala, found a new orchid species at Kalimantan, named Dendrobium Kelamense D.Metusala, P.O’Byrne and J.J.Wood.

The orchid is from genus Dendrobium section Calcarifera which have its center population in West Indonesia, especially in Sumatra island. And from 29 known species, 20 of them are endemic.

Rio stated that the place where him and his researcher colleagues found the orchid will be kept in secret for conservation purposes. He stated in his email to Media Indonesia: “Because when a new species came out, usually it will be followed by a big exploitation of the orchid in its natural habitat”. His researcher colleagues are P. O’Byrne, an orchid expert from Singapore, and the other one, J.J. Wood, comes from Kew Herbarium, United Kingdom.

Dendrobium kelamense, D.Metusala, P.O'Byrne & J.J.Wood

Dendrobium kelamense (courtesy of Destario Metusala, usage with his permission)

This new species had been published in Malesian Orchid Journal, an international journal, in March 2010 edition. This orchid growed in cluster and epiphytic, and each mature stem have long vary between 60 cm to 110 cm.

The inflorescent grow from near-tip of the stem and each one have long vary between 5 cm to 8.5 cm with 12 buds of the flower. Each perfectly blossom flower have height around 2 cm and width 3 cm to 3.5 cm. Its petal and sepal have bright-and-glossy yellow colour with maroon colour parallel spot pattern.

Other orchid species which had similar morphology with this orchid is Dendrobium panduriferum. The difference between both can be seen from its labellum. Dendrobium kelamense‘s labellum have U-shaped calus in between side lobus and the edge of middle lobus is nearly jaggy.

According to Rio, this orchid, Dendrobium kelamense, have big potential for mass cultivation.