AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Satyrium situsanguinum van der Niet & Liltved, S. African J. Bot. 75: 22 (2009).
Description:
Terrestrial herbaceous plants. Stem erect to sub-erect. Underground portion 20-40 mm long, covered by several leaf sheaths; above-ground portion 160-420 mm tall. Tubers 2, ovoid, 30-50x6-12 mm, brown. Leaves 2, basal, spreading but not adpressed to the ground, broadly ovate, entire, glabrous, leathery with prominent striations abaxially, 20-68 x20-62 mm; transition between leaves and cauline leaf sheaths abrupt. Leaf sheaths 2, 20-50 mm long, urceolate-campanulate, loosely clasping the stem, apex acute, sometimes reflexed. Inflorescence 50-220 mm long, slender and lax, 2-31-flowered; bracts reflexed at anthesis, 1119 mm x 5-8 mm, lanceolate, acuminate, glabrous, margins ciliolate. Flowers non-resupinate, white, occasionally cream-yellow, sometimes with light pink tinges on sepals and petals. Ovary 8.3-13.1 mm long, longitudinally ridged, glabrous. Sepals and lateral petals linear to oblong, obtuse, crenulate, forming a loose tube with the side of labellum. Lateral sepals projecting forward for about half their length, then sharply reflexed to the side, fused with median sepal and lateral petals for ± 1/5-1/4 their length (1.4-2.9 mm), the free part 8.0-9.5x2.5-3.3 mm. Median sepal projecting forward for ± half its length, then gradually reflexing downward, the free part 7.2-8.9 x 1.8-2.2 mm. Lateral petals projecting forward for ± half their length, then gradually reflexing downward, the free part 6.9-7.8 x 1.8-2.4 mm. Labellum galeate, aperture 2.4-4.1 mm wide and 2.8-3.4 mm high, forward facing, subglobose, apical flap prominent, 2.1-2.9 x 2.6-2.1 mm, erect to recurved, unevenly crenulate, margins sometimes inflexed, apex acute to obtuse, back of the labellum with a weakly developed dorsal ridge; base of labellum hairy adaxially; spurs 15.0-21.7 mm long, pendent along ovary, hairy inside. Gynostemium: column part 3.5-5.1x0.6 mm, slightly bent forward towards galea aperture. Stigma erect, 1.7-2.3 x 1.4—1.9 mm, obcordate. Rostel-him ± retuse, 2.3—2.7x1.4—1.9 mm, with a weakly triangular, rounded apical lobe extending beyond the laterally placed, globular viscidia. Anther 1.5-2.0 x2.0-2.3 mm, projecting downwards, connective truncate, not extending beyond anther thecae. Stami-nodes laterally placed at anther base as basal bulges, 0.7-1.0 mm long.
Habitat:
Satyrium situsanguinum was observed amongst overgrown fynbos vegetation were confined to wet peaty soil on cliff edges and moist stream banks at c. 900 m above sea level.
Distribution:
SW. Cape Prov.