Thunia alba

Thunia alba

Thunia Rchb.f., (1852) is accepted genus by POWO, Kew. The native range of this genus is Indian Subcontinent to S. Central China and Peninsula Malaysia. 

POWO, Kew accepted only 4 species:

Thunia alba (Lindl.) Rchb.f.

Thunia bensoniae Hook.f.

Thunia brymeriana Rolfe

Thunia pulchra Rchb.f.

Previous Awards:

There are 17 AOS awards for Thunia including different species and one hybrid. Some of the Thunia species Kew recognized as synonyms of Thunia alba. 


The candidate plant has 18 flowers and 28 buds on 16 inflorescences up to 8 cm. Plant is 70 cm in height and 123 cm width and growing in 20 cm terracotta pot in sphagnum moss. Plant has 11 old leafless canes and 16 new flowering arching canes with leaves up to 80 cm long.

This Thunia has an original label with the name - Thunia alba.

There are some confusions about Thunia alba. For example Thunia marshalliana (8 AOS awards) is a synonym of Thunia alba var. alba. The same story with Thunia majorensis.

I would like to share comments of Alex Sanchez Sans, former Orchid Curator of Shanghai Botanical Garden:

'Well, the point is that if you follow Kew accepted names (that is probably what Longwood is doing) marshalliana is just a synonym, so the right name is Thunia alba. There are like 50 synonyms of alba, sometimes is just used to remark the lightness or deepness of the coloration of the label, or somehow a light pink coloration of the crown, but if we follow Kew only Thunia alba is accepted.'

Exhibitor mentioned that plant has been 10 month in his care.

Flower Measurements:

NS H - 14.0 cm;                   NS V - 10.0 cm;

Dorsal Sep. W - 1.9 cm;    Dorsal Sep. L - 7.7 cm;

Petal W - 1.7 cm;               Petals L - 7.8 cm;

Lat/Sepal W - 1.8 cm;       Lat/Sepal L - 8.2 cm;

Lip/Pouch W - 3.8 cm;     Lip/Pouch L - 5.0 cm.

Exhibitor - Bill Stender, PA

Plant has been nominated for CHM (botanical award) and scored 85 pts (Certificate of Horticultural Merit)

Awarded as Thunia brymeriana.

Virtual Award Description

Entered as Thunia alba, awarded as Thunia brymeriana.