AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Aeranthes laxiflora Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 33: 279 (1925).
Description:
Plants with a short stem, 6-7 mm. in diameter densely leafy, entirely covered by the sheaths. Leaves lingulate (11-17 .x 2-3.4 cm.) fleshy and blackish in the herbarium. Inflorescence generally 10 cm long, pendent loosely 3-4 flowered, flowers white thin and of average size; peduncle to 4 cm. long and bearing several distant sheaths, bracts oval, obtuse and half or one-third the length of the pedicel. Sepals lanceolate, longly acuminate 14 mm long, the laterals slightly dilate above the base on the front side. Petals nearly as long as the sepals, the limbus widely oval, then elongated in an acumin. Labellum widely rounded-trapizoidal shortly acuminate (12 x 8 mm near the center). Column 3.5 mm tall; foot elongated, spurred slightly curved in front, thin cylindrical and 13 mm long. Pedicel 8 mm long generally. Capsule shortly pedicellate, fusiform-cylindrical (2.5 x 0.8 cm.) and 6 parted.
Habitat:
Epiphyte: mossy forests, from 1600- 1800 m. alt.; flowering January-February.
Cultivation:
As given for the genus.
Distribution:
N. & E. Madagascar. Endemic.
References:
Orchids of Madagascar Hermans 2007; Field Guide to the Orchids of Madagascar Cribb & Herman 2009; WCSP (2017). 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 21.01-2017; http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
Images:
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