AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Angraecopsis gracillima (Rolfe) Summerh., Bull. Misc. Inform. Kew 1937: 465 (1937).
Homotypic Synonyms:
Mystacidium gracillimum Rolfe, Bull. Misc. Inform. Kew 1913: 144 (1913).
Description:
Plant with a short, upright or pendent stem 1–7 cm long; roots tomentose. Leaves 2–10, linear, often falcate, twisted at the base so that they lie in one plane, obtusely and bluntly bilobed at the apex, 6–15 cm long, 8–15 mm wide. Inflorescences slender, usually erect, bearing 4–20 flowers close together in the apical quarter, 5–20 cm long; bracts sheathing, 2–3 mm long; pedicel with ovary 1.7– 2.7 cm long. Flowers white, usually with the lateral sepals and petals reflexed so they look very narrow; dorsal sepal ovate, up to 3 mm long; lateral sepals dependent on either side of the lip, spathulate, 7–9 mm long; petals ovate or triangular, joined to the lateral sepals for two thirds of their length, 2–5 mm long and wide; lip 3-lobed, side lobes linear and shorter than the wider mid-lobe, up to 5 mm long; spur slender and usually curved, 3–4 cm long.
Habitat:
On branches and trunks of small trees and in the canopy of evergreen forest, usually with the roots shrouded in a thin layer of moss; 1500– 1850 m; flowering May to August.
Cultivation:
As given for the genus, cool growing epiphyte.
Distribution:
Uganda to Zambia
References:
Orchids of East Africa Piers 1968; The Orchids of South Central Africa Williamson; Flora of Tropical East Africa Orchidaceae Part 3 Cribb 1989; Orchids of Kenya Stewart 1996; Flora Zambesiaca Vol 11 Part 2 Pope 1998; Angraecoid Orchids Stewart, Hermans and Campbell 2006; WCSP (2017). 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 14.02-2017; http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
Images:
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Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ
angraecopsis gracillima angraecopsis gracillima 02 angraecopsis gracillima 03 angraecopsis gracillima 04 angraecopsis gracillima 05 angraecopsis gracillima close angraecopsis gracillima in situ
Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission. Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission. Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission. Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission. Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission. Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission. Photograph©Backmann. Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission.