AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Angraecopsis trifurca (Rchb.f.) Schltr., Beih. Bot. Centralbl. 33(2): 428 (1915).
Synonyms:
Aeranthes trifurca Rchb.f., Flora 68: 540 (1885).
Mystacidium trifurcum (Rchb.f.) T.Durand & Schinz, Consp. Fl. Afric. 5: 55 (1894).
Listrostachys trifurca (Rchb.f.) Finet, Bull. Soc. Bot. France 54(9): 51 (1907).
Description:
Plant with a short, erect or pendent stem, to 1 cm long; roots slightly hairy, 1.5–2 mm in diameter. Leaves 4 or 5, linear, falcate, twisted at the base so that they lie in one plane, 12–20 cm long, ca. 1 cm wide. Inflorescence bearing 6 or 7 flowers in the apical quarter, 7–8 cm long. Flowers cream, pale green or pale brown; dorsal sepal ovate, 2.5–3.5 mm long, 1.5 mm wide; lateral sepals linear, 3–7 mm long, 1–1.5 mm wide; petals 3–4 mm long, 2.5 mm wide; lip 3-lobed in the basal half, the side lobes slightly shorter than the mid-lobe, 4–6.5 mm long; spur slender, incurved, 13–16 mm long.
Habitat:
In evergreen rain forest and on mossy rocks, in shade; ca. 1200 m; flowering in April.
Cultivation:
As given for the genus.
Notes:
This species is, in Zimbabwe, known only from an old record from the Nyahode Valley, south of the Chimanimani Mts (A.O. Crook 398, 1951). It is otherwise known from the Comoro Islands, more than 2000 km away. It has not been found again.
Distribution:
Ethiopia, Zimbabwe (Chimanimani Mountains),and Comoro Islands.
References:
Kimberley, M.J. (2003). A List of Epiphytic Orchids of Zimbabwe Excelsa 20 Page 49; La Croix, I. & Cribb, P.J. (1998). Orchidaceae (Part 2) Flora Zambesiaca 11(2) Page 398; WCSP (2017). 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 14.02-2017; http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
Images:
Click on each image to see a larger version.