Satyrium monadenum Schltr., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 53: 527 (1915).

Terrestrial herb 30–60 cm, high; tubers 1.5–2 × 1–2 cm, globose to ovoid, tomentose. Sterile shoot with 3(4) leaves, at various stages of development at flowering time, the lowest 2 sheath-like, the terminal one c. 5 cm long, lanceolate, acute. Flowering stem purplish in upper half with 6–7 loosely sheathing, imbricate leaves up to 7 cm long. Inflorescence 9–15 × 3 cm, densely many-flowered. Flowers rich carmine-red. Ovary and pedicel 10–12 mm long; bracts to 25 mm long at base of inflorescence, reflexed, tinged with red. Sepals and petals spreading and projecting forwards, joined to each other and lip for about a third of their length. Median sepal 12–14 × 2–2.5 mm, narrowly oblong, rounded; lateral sepals of similar length but broader and oblique. Petals similar to median sepal. Lip 10–12 mm long, 13–16 mm wide when spread out, very convex and hooded with a wide mouth, the apex slightly reflexed. Spurs 12–15 mm long, slender, parallel to ovary. Column 7–8 mm long, the stalk slender, curved; stigma 2 × 3 mm; rostellum shortly 3-lobed, the mid-lobe tooth-like and shorter than side lobes; viscidium single, constricted in middle.

This species sometimes forms large colonies.

Seasonally wet montane grassland usually over 2100 m.

SW. Tanzania to Zambia

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Botanical Drawing / Herbarium
Photograph copyright Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz Image used with kind permission.