Monday, 21 September 2009

Coelogyne asperata

(Photo 1) Newly opened stalk of flowers

Coelogyne asperata is another beautiful scented orchid found growing on tree branches and rock faces near rivers in the primary forests of Borneo. (See my earlier posts - Perfume in the Jungle and Pigeon Orchid.) It is also found in many parts of Southeast Asia - Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Sulawesi, Philippines, the Moluccas, Solomon Islands and all the way to Papua New Guinea. Alas, as with many other beautiful native plants, it is no longer very common in the wild as more of our forests disappear.
Flies (Photo 2) and a brightly coloured day-flying moth (Photo 3) attracted to the flowers

My photos were taken in my garden where this one plant had lived for years, flowering every once in a long while. Each time it does, whiffs of perfume announce to all and sundry that it's in bloom. Many insects were attracted by the sweet scent - flies, bees, beetles, moths. Many day flying moths and beetles were observed at the flowers but I believe only the bigger flower beetle (Coleoptera - Cetoniidae) that I photographed was an effective pollinator - and I say so because it was seen with the orchid's pollinia (pollens) stuck to its back as it crawled into the lips and column of the flower.
Photo 4 - An equally beautifully coloured flower beetle that's just landed on the flower
Photo 5 - The beetle has crawled into the "heart" of the flower to get at its nectar and
come out with pairs of pollinia stuck to its back (Photo 6) which it would carry to
another flower's stigma to fertilize it.


Noushka said...

Such a pity you don't have many visitors!
Your blog is wonderful and I crave to see a lot more of your fauna, including insects from your incredibly beautiful island I hope to visit one day, if we manage to sell our property in Europe to move to Australia as planned!!
It would be great if you could find time to publish more: I am sure your have exquisite wonders to show!:)
Thanks for joining my dragonfly blog!

K-W SoundEagle said...

Hi Borneo Born and Noushka,

We are all bound by our devotion to and love for orchids.

Since you mention Australia, I would like to invite you to visit my orchid website at

You can also join and interact with us at

My main website is at, which is a garden of art, science, poetry, music, video, graphics, cartoons, animations, games and puzzles.

Borneo Born said...

K-W thanks for visiting this blog. Unfortunately I had not updated any post for years already. Hopefully soon I would be able to "reactivate/resurrect" it.