Tillandsia kolbii
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Tillandsia kolbii
Natural hybrid of matudae? X ?.
FCBS reports that "Extensive searching by Ehlers in the habitat area suggests strongly that this alleged species is in fact a hybrid."

From Derek Butcher's Talk at Cairns 2008....
"I think it has been finally decided that this is not the same as T. scaposa which everybody has. As far as I am aware T. kolbii is not in Australia but that should not stop us from discussing it. The holotype was collected in 1979. Described in 1981 it did not take Renate Ehlers long to seek out this location because only one collection had been reported. Were there other plants in the area? Despite searches the plant was very elusive although T. matudae was in the area. Other later more extensive searches for this elusive plant failed to find one with purple-violet petals but several with white petals. The original collection was grown on at the Linz Botanical Garden where the Head Gardener reported flowers vaying from white to pale violet white to violet, suggesting hybridity but what parentage! The white version!"
See DD1008. Natural Hybrid Talk for more details.

From Derek Butcher 05/11. "Ross, Re. the plant you found in Queensland, sold as "kaoldi", assumed kolbii. I don't believe T. kolbii is in Australia. It has been confused in the past with T. scaposa, and even that is rare in Australia.
Please check the picture below of T. scaposa and see DD0511 for further details.
Incidentaly, the kolbii picture below from Ken Woods is clearly a T. ionantha. The inflorescence does not have a scape. In other words the inflorescence is nestled in the leaf rosette. So if you have a T. ionantha where the inflorescence is looking high then think T. scaposa.

T. ionantha, bought as T. kolbii by Ken Woods.(see note above)
T. kolbii See DD1008. Natural Hybrid Talk.
T. scaposa From Derek Butcher. 1993 jbs 190.
T. scaposa. Derek Butcher 05/11.

Updated 12/06/11