Thursday, April 11, 2013

Myrmecophila tibicinis 'H&R' x 'Jean'

Myrmecophila tibicinis 'H&R' x 'Jean' - Plant photo by Richard LindbergThe Myrmecophila tibicinis is still alive. It is doing a little better in Napa. I moved it from Sonoma last year. No sign of blooming.

Myrmecophila tibicinis grows from Mexico through northern South America. It is warm to hot growing, wants full sun and is fragrant. The plant is big and the spike can be as much as 15 feet long. The genus Myrmecophila contains 8 species that are a subset of Schomburgkia and were separated because of the hollow pseudobulbs. They are found in tropical areas of the new world.

Since it wants full sun I think I will try growing it outside. I will hand water and see how it reacts.


  1. I have had my Myrmecophila tibicinis for four years with no blooms. This year I moved it to an arbor (covered in vine) in full sun. Two days ago I discovered 2 2-3 foot shoots coming out the top of the arbor. My fingers are crossed!

  2. Thanks for validating full sun. I spend much time making sure that my plants DON'T ever get full sun. I will get the plant moved tomorrow.

  3. Agreed on full sun for Myrmecophila, even seedlings can take much higher light than expected. From what I understand the pseudobulbs are supposed to turn almost yellow if it's in enough sun, the kind of sunbleached coloration that would indicate too high light in almost anything else. If you look at pictures of them in nature, M. tibicinis' pseudobulbs are most definitely yellowed from a high amount of sun. Love this one, hope it blooms for you soon!

  4. I have seen Myrmecophylas (I believe tibicinis) in situ in Mexico (Tulum in May 2012). The ones that were spiking were actually growing deep below the canopy of Red Mangroves in a swampy area. They were close to the brackish water and the spikes were shooting up above the mangroves. So I am not sure of the full sun, maybe it is more about warmth and humidity. I have seen them used in landscaping. those in full sun looked half dead with old pseudobulbs dried up and the new ones looking yellow/ red. An old lady had a beautiful specimen on a tree outside her door and was a bright area but shaded by some tree. I took photos of all of that. It was the most common orchid near the ocean.