Stanhopea tigrina Bateman ex Lindl. - Orchidaceae - tiger-spotted stanhopea, Getigerte Stanhopea
Spectacular epiphytic orchid, endemic to Mexico; flowers in groups of 2-4 in a pendulous inflorescence up to 15 cm long; marked with distinctive purplish-brown streaks and stripes on a yellowish background; heavily scented.
„Pollination is by male euglossine bees (also known as orchid bees), which collect floral fragrance compounds from the lip of the flowers.“
The genus of Stanhopea (occurring throughout much of the Neotropics from northwestern Mexico to southeastern Brazil) was used as a detailed example of the variation and species specificity in floral fragrance composition. Components of the floral fragrance (adsorbed at a Tenax tube and desorbed with microdistillation) of S.tigrina were p-cymene (2.0%), phenylethanol (6.5%), benzyl acetate (1.0%), phenylethyl acetate (69.4%), indole (3.4%), (Z?)-cinnamyl acetate (1.0%), and (E?)-cinnamyl acetate (15.8%).
[Williams, Norris H., and W. Mark Whitten. „Orchid floral fragrances and male euglossine bees: methods and advances in the last sesquidecade.“ The Biological Bulletin 164.3 (1983): 355-395]
„Its diffusive, 'aromatic-spicy-floral' scent is extremly sweet. One would not expect to contain more than 90% phenylethyl acetate; in fact, it is difficult even to detect this well-knwon substance in the scent… the unusual accord is attributeable to minor constituents accompaning phenylethyl acetate, in particular β-ionone and derivatives, coumarin, p-hydroxy phenylbutanone (raspberry ketone), and vanillin.“
The accord of raspberry ketone with vanilline and coumarin is extremly heavy and probably unique among orchid scents.
[R.Kaiser, The scent of orchids, Basel 1993, 80-81 and 244]
Main component of the headspace of S.tigrina flowers was phenylethyl acetate (87-93%), minor components were e.g. benzyl acetate (1.4-3.2%), (E)-cinnamyl acetate (0-6.4%), phenylethyl alcohol (0.7-1.5%), methyl salicylate (0.2-1.6%), indole (0-1.4%), and vanillin (0-0.2%).
[Gerlach, Günter. „Stanhopeinae Mesoamericanae, V. El aroma floral de las Stanhopeas de Mexico.“ Lankesteriana International Journal on Orchidology 9.3 (2009)] http://www.redalyc.org/pdf/443/44339819008.pdf
Stanhopea tigrina Bateman ex Lindl.
Lindenia, Iconographie des orchidées [E. von Lindemann], Plates 49-96, vol.2 t.51 (1886) [P. de Pannemaeker]