Dendrobium of Borneo
Dendrobium, with approximately 1450 species, is one of the most diverse genera in the orchid family and the second biggest orchid genus in Southeast Asia after Bulbophyllum. Its natural range extends from Japan south across the Pacific to Tahiti and New Zealand, and from China and India to New Guinea and Australia. Centres of speciation are found in the Himalayan region, Indochina, the Malay Archipelago (especially Sumatra and Borneo), the Philippines and New Guinea. Dendrobiums have been popular with growers since the mid nineteenth century. They continue to be popular today and many beautiful hybrids have been bred.
Borneo is one of several ‘hot spots’ of Dendrobium speciation. With 167 named species in fifteen sections, as well as several others that remain to be described, Borneo is the second most important location after New Guinea of Dendrobium speciation in Malesia. Most species occur as epiphytes in hill and lower montane forest at moderate elevation, mostly between about 900 and 1600 m.