Definitions for oncidiumɒnˈsɪd i əm
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
on•cid•i•umɒnˈsɪd i əm(n.)
any of numerous American orchids of the genus Oncidium, having clusters of showy flowers.
Origin of oncidium:
< NL (1800)
oncidium, dancing lady orchid, butterfly plant, butterfly orchid(noun)
any orchid of the genus Oncidium: characterized by slender branching sprays of small yellow and brown flowers; often grown as houseplants
Oncidium, abbreviated as Onc. in the horticultural trade, is a genus that contains about 330 species of orchids from the subtribe Oncidiinae of the orchid family. In 2008, Oxfords Annals of Botany labeled the Oncidium alliance "grossly polyphyletic." The American Orchid Society labeled this genus a "dumping ground." After DNA testing and much debate, a consensus was announced resulting in major taxonomic changes to Oncidium, Gomesa, Odontoglossum, Miltonia, and others. Much of this debate and subsequent housekeeping was initiated by significant research for the scientific publication Genera Orchidacearum Volume 5. As a result, much of the information in this article is now deprecated, but still of great value. One significant change is the move of most Brazilian Oncidium with a fused lateral sepal to the genus Gomesa. The Royal Horticultural Society system, the World Checklist of Monocots database at http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/home.do and the American Orchid Society have already updated their databases to reflect most of these changes.
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