Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Zygopetalum mackaii Hook.

An epiphytic orchid with small. 2-3-leved pseudo-bulbs, the leaves to 45cm long, and spikes of 7 or more fragrant, greenish-yellow flowers, marked with purple or brown.  [RHSD, Hortus].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘This was received in February, 1827, along with the Fragrant Pleurothallis. given in the preceding number, from Mr. Mackay, of the Dublin College Botanic Garden, and was by him imported from Brazil.  It is a plant of great beauty, and may be numbered amongst the most shewy of the highly interesting family of Orchidaceous plants.  It is so unlike in the structure of its  flower to any described plant, that I have no hesitation  in constituting of it a new genus.’  [BM t.2748/1827].

History at Camden Park

Zygopetalum mackayii was included in a consignment of plants sent from Kew by John Bidwill in November 1843 [AJCP].  It seems likely that these plants were forwarded to William Macarthur at Camden but there is no direct evidence of this plant being grown there.


Published Jan 27, 2010 - 02:37 PM | Last updated Jan 27, 2010 - 02:42 PM

Shown are pseudobulb, leaves and spike of green, brown-spotted flowers with blue lip.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.2748, 1827.

Zygopetalum mackeyii Hook. | BM t.2748/1827 | BHL

Family Orchidaceae
Region of origin


Common Name
Name in the Camden Park Record

Zygopetalum mackaii 

Confidence level high