AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Liparis deistelii Schltr., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 38: 151 (1906).
Heterotypic Synonyms:
Liparis odontochilos Summerh., Bot. Mus. Leafl. 14: 226 (1951).
Description:
Epiphytic or terrestrial herb with shoots up to 15 cm high arising 4-12 cm apart above a slender creeping rhizome. Pseudobulbs fleshy, up to 4 cm high with 2-3 small sheathing leaves at the base and 3 larger leaves above. Leaves light green, thin, ovate to oblong-lanceolate, 5-8 cm long, acute at the apex, gradually tapering to the sheathing base. Inflorescence terminal, with 2-12 yellow, green or purplish flowers. Flowers 10-15 mm in diameter; dorsal sepal up to 10 mm long, 3 mm wide at the base; lateral sepals joined almost to the apex, orbicular, slightly auricled at the base, curved up beneath the lip; petals linear, up to 11 mm long; lip narrow at the auricled base with a bilobed callus, then widening to become flabellate, emarginate, up to 7 mm long and wide, margins dentate; column slender, curved, up to 5 mm long.
Habitat:
On mossy banks and amongst moss on the trunks of tree ferns and other forest trees, also on rocks and fallen trees in shade, often near rivers, throughout the highland forests; 1700-2750 m.
Phenology:
Flowering in May and June and also in November.
Cultivation:
As given for the genus.
Distribution:
WC. & E. Trop. Africa to W. Ethiopia and Malawi
References:
CONTRIBUTION À L'ÉTUDE DES ORCHIDACEAE DU BURUNDI (DEUXIÈME PARTIE) D. GEERINCK, Belgian Journal of Botany, Vol. 129, Fasc. 1 (1996), pp. 66-70; New Liparis Species (Orchidaceae) from South Central and East Africa Graham Williamson, Plant Systematics and Evolution, Vol. 142, No. 3/4 (1983), pp. 149-156; The Forest Vegetation of the Nyika Plateau (Malawi-Zambia): Ecological and Phenological Studies F. Dowsett-Lemaire, Bulletin du Jardin botanique national de Belgique / Bulletin van de National Plantentuin van België, Vol. 55, No. 3/4 (Dec. 31, 1985), pp. 301-392
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