The genus bulbophyllum is the largest genus of orchids family. The actual number of species currently is more than 2000, which is supposed to be 3000. This genus was described by Louis-Marie Aubert Du Petit-Thouars in 1822 and the name 'bulbophyllum' came from the Greek bulbos(bulb) and phyllon(leaf).
Over the years, there were lots of allied genera which have been combined with and separated from Bulbophyllum have been described by taxonomists. some of them are quite common and well known by collectors, such as Cirrhopetalum. When you get a plant from someone locally and the name is Cirrhopetalum, don't be supervise, it is a Bulbophyllum plant.
The sizes of Bulbophyllum species varies from giant to miniature. The biggest one is Bulbophyllum phalaenopsis while Bulbophyllum minutissima - Currently thought to be the smallest orchid [3-4 mm tall] in the world.
In the following updates we will talk about some Bulbophyllum species to show this amazing genus of orchids even it is not common in New Zealand.