- San Diego Zoo
Orchid: Cattleya X Brabantiae Cattleya aclandiae x loddigesii
FAMILY: ORCHIDACEAE (Orchid Family)
In 1863, for the first time ever, the Royal Horticulture Society gave an award to an orchid hybrid: John Dominy's Cattleya X Brabantiae ( Cattleya aclandiae x loddigesii ). His plant received the Society's Silver Banksian Medal and came to make its home in the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew. During the events that led to World War II, however, England began rationing gas and the Kew Gardens could not buy enough gas to keep its greenhouses warm. So in the 1930s, Kew's horticulturists shipped a number of their most precious plants to a San Francisco nursery, including Dominy's historic hybrid. Then in the 1970s, local orchid afficionado Monty Brice purchased one of the famous Cattleya 's shoots and donated it to the San Diego Zoo.
Our historic Cattleya X Brabantiae has done well here, and several of its shoots have been separated to make additional plants. You can see them all in our Orchid House!