AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Disperis aphylla Kraenzl. ex De Wild. & T.Durand, Bull. Soc. Roy. Bot. Belgique, Compt.-Rend. 38: 71 (1899).
Description:
Terrestrial herb 6–16 cm tall, the stem greenish-white with purple streaks; tubers 10–20 × 5–10 mm, ovoid or globose. Leaves 2 (1 or absent in subsp. aphylla), opposite or subopposite, purple on the undersurface, 2–3 × 1.5–2.5 cm, ovate; margins undulate. Inflorescence 1–5-flowered; flowers white or pale lilac-pink, the sepals darker towards the base. Ovary and pedicel purplish, 10–14 mm long; bracts leaf-like, 9–13 × 3–5 mm. Dorsal sepal 9–10.5 mm long from apex to top of spur and 5–6 mm long from top of spur to apex of ovary, adnate to petals to form a fairly slender spur 3–4 mm long. Lateral sepals free, 7–9 × 2–3 mm, obliquely ovate, slightly curved, each with a sac-like spur c. 1.5 mm long. Petals c. 7 × 3 mm, triangular. Lip with a linear claw 2–4.5 mm long, reflexed near the apex; limb short and narrow and just before the apex bearing 2 linear, 2-lobed, papillate appendages c. 2 mm long.
Habitat:
In leaf litter in montane evergreen forests at 2000-2150 m. Flowering from February to July.
Distribution:
Congo to Kenya and Angola