Phaius species;




Phaius tankerville-MN260311: Sending phots of Phaius tankervillea orchid.
This is a terrestrial orchid growing in ordinary soil and like plenty
of water and light.
Blooming period : March – April
Place:  Dombivli
Date :  26.3.2011

the picture I sent earlier was from an exhibition.  This one is growing in our balcony.   I bought this from an exhibition cum sale in Thane.   How is the flower?

I dont think this is Phaius tankervilleae, thats why I asked. Will check more and let you know. If possible you may have atleast one flower in 70% alcohol and keep with you. I may request you to check
some inner parts soon. 

Please check this reference and compare your plant.
Can you please send me the other link.
There is third species which is called Phaius luridus. 

I have some very basic (you may think stupid) question… which alcohol is suitable for saving flowers for ID…? Can l, sitting at home, not having a lab anymore, still use this method? by using 70% dilution of Vodka… to save flowers or small seeds for later dissection?   How long can one preserve flowers in 70% alcohol? 

The same question I was about to ask you.  Is it available in any Chemist shop.  I am from a liquor industry, but I do not think the liquor will help. 

When I said alcohol, I always meant, ethyl alcohol or ethanol. I dont drink 🙂
Frankly, yes, beer or vodka, which also has alcohol can be of some help, but not for longer duration…..and then it stinks which I dont like….
Ethyl alcohol bottles are available at chemist or scientific labs. 

Yes … is right
The ones available with the chemists is, however, methylated, and can’t be used as vodka or rum. It is however also true that absolute alcohol available in labs is without methylation and sometimes smuggled out for use
as alcoholic beverage.

Thank you….
my question really was can vodka be used …
a little googling got me this: usual vodka sold in international market
is usually 40% or so… Its alcohol content is ethanol…. but I GUESS IT WOULD NOT DO … since its only 40%…

so I guess I am to try and find Spirit from pharmacists…
BUT NOWADAYS the alcohol availbale for cleaning injection sites etc is Isopropyl alcohol really… which carries its own toxicity for humans, but our regulators are not concerned with that at this point…I am
goint to write that up elsewhere…
my next question is , suppose I did find the rectified spirit, and made 70% with WATER? or do I need to buffer it, like we do for human tissues preservation when using formalin?   Can buffered formalin be
used for preserving flowers?
So in summary I am asking two questions: Rectified spirit is to be diluted with what, and  cand buffered formalin be used for flowers in particular and botanical specimen in general? 

As per my understanding or faded memory formaline decolourises the specimen and makes it brital too.
Even alcohol has to be used with some % of CuSo4.
Remaining may ask someone and let you know. 

I enquired for the 70% alcohol with the chemists in our area, but nobody stocks it. Please let me know other alternatives. 

.. is right , in his neighborhood ethanol is not available, neither is it in my neighborhood…. In West Bengal
apparently there is a huge pressure on chemists/drug stores to maintain records of ETHANOL sales…they prefer not to stock it… avoid hassles and all that goes with it…. so not available… only Isopropyl alcohol to doctors for their injections….  ”  the rectified spirit even if it had methanol” of my salad days could have been useful to make the 70% alcohol to preserve the flowers for ID…
These are not good days for the citizen scientist… the armchair naturalist… who in 17th, 18th and 19th century flourished and help enhance the cause of science .

BUT I TAKE heart that we are armed with good quality digital cameras where we can catch fantastic stuff for our own consumption and for posterity or for databases…and this sort of groups and the internet.

WE NEED TO DISCOVER IF ISOPROPYL ALOCHOL WORKS JUST AS WELL for flowers, I’ll get some and buy some run of the mill orchids and tuberoses etc from the local florist and immerse them for 1, 3, 5, 7 days,  take out and dissect to see if the petal structure survived….

I ‘ll report it here in couple of weeks’ time…
In the mean time I need to learn to reduce the pic size without loosing details that I  like and upload images…

I have attached a pic of what I think to be Phaius tankervilleae.
Please check if they look different.

Orchid identfication is very tricky. Sometimes you just cant confirm even the genus without seeing the pollinia with your own eyes. This Phaius has been long misidentified with P. wallichii and then with another species Phaius luridus. This looks close to tankervilleae though. But yes, while checking the photographs, you always have limitations. Hope you will understand my problem here.