AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Eggelingia gabonensis P.J.Cribb & Laan, Kew Bull. 44: 479 (1989).
Homotypic Synonyms:
Tridactyle gabonensis (P.J.Cribb & Laan) R.Rice, Prelim. Checklist & Survey Subtrib. Aerangidinae (Orchidac.): 48 (2005).
Description:
A dwarf epiphyte to 6-10 cm tall. Stems erect, tufted, very slender, c. 0-5 mm diam., bilaterally compressed, slightly zig-zag, usually leafy throughout their length. Leaves distichous, suberect-spreading, linear, bilobed at apex, each lobe acute, 1-2-4 cm x 1-2-5 mm, twisted at the base to lie in one plane, articulated to a black-spotted ancipitous sheathing leaf base, bearing a setose ligule 2-4 mm long. Inflorescences emerging through the leaf bases opposite the leaves, several, 1- or rarely 2-flowered, 2-3 mm long; peduncle very short, c. 1 mm long; bract ovate, acute, amplexicaul at base. Flowers white, translucent; pedicel and ovary 2 mm long, twisted in the middle. Dorsal sepal elliptic, obtuse, 3 x 1-8 mm; lateral sepals obliquely ovate, obtuse, 4 x 1-5 mm. Petals elliptic, obtuse, 2-5-3 x 2 mm, somewhat erose on the margins. Lip 3-lobed, porrect, 3 x 2-5-3 mm.; spur clavate, 2 mm long. Column 1-2 mm long; pollinia 2, ovoid; stipes Y-shaped; viscidium ovate-rostrate; anther-cap with a short apical beak; rostellum cuneate, bifid, slightly reflexed-dependent.
Habitat:
Epiphyte about 570 m.
Cultivation:
As given for the genus.
Notes:
Much smaller than the other species in all respects, with very narrow leaves and a shorter spur.
Distribution:
WC. Trop. Africa
References:
WCSP (2017). 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 15.03.2017; http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
Images:
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