AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Disperis katangensis Summerh., Bull. Misc. Inform. Kew 1931: 384 (1931).
Description:

Terrestrial herb 5–20 cm tall; stem greenish above, beetroot-coloured towards the base; tuber c. 1 cm long, globose. Leaves 2, alternate, 1–3 × 0.8–2 cm, ovate, cordate at the base, deep dull green with whitish veins on upper surface, deep purple below. Inflorescence 1–5-flowered.Flowers pale mauve with yellow and purple marks inside hood; lip yellow with white claw and appendages. Ovary 10–13 mm long; bracts leaf-like, 6–20 mm long. Dorsal sepal 7–17 mm long, linear, adnate to petals to form an open hood 7–15 mm long, 5.5–11 mm deep and 8–18 mm wide across mouth. Lateral sepals 9–15 × 6–11 mm, obliquely elliptic, apiculate, joined for quarter to one third of their length, each with a sac-like spur up to 0.5 mm long. Petals 7–17 × 7–11 mm, elliptic. Lip 7.5–10 mm long, the claw sharply bent back near the base and then dilated into an appendage; appendage densely papillate, reniform and emarginate or deeply 2-lobed; the claw ending in a spathulate, elliptic or almost circular limb with a papillate crest.
Habitat:
Distribution:

W. Tanzania to Angola