AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Benthamia longicalceata H.Perrier, Notul. Syst. (Paris) 14: 139 (1951).
Description:
Geophyta gracilis 25-40 cm. alta, monophylla. Folium radicale ovale (1 .3-3 x 1-1,5 cm.), breviter (5-10 mm.) petiolatum, acute-acuminatum. Scapus gracilis vaginis sparsim vestitus. Racemus densus, 2-4 cm. longas, 7-10 mm. latus, 10-20-florus. Bracteae acutae, anguste lanceolatae, ovario pedicellate breviores. Sepala uninervia, posticum obtuse ovatum (2 x 1.5 mm) lateralibus subfalciformibus (3 X 1,8 mm.) minus. Petala obtuse subfalciformia, parva (2x1 mm.) uninervia. Labellum perlonge (2,5 mm.)ø calceatum, basi apertum et lateraliter subbilobulatum; calcar pendens, cylindraceum labello aequilongum (2,5 mm.).
Help wanted to an English translation, write to me, if you know where this can be found.
Habitat:
Distribution:
NE. Madagascar

Benthamia majoriflora H.Perrier, Notul. Syst. (Paris) 14: 140 (1951).
Description:
Geophyta robusta, 60 cm.-l m. alta, in herbario nigrescens. Cauli; infra medium vaginis atrorubris obtectus, folia ocato-lanceolata (usque ad 22 X 4 cm.) supra medium gerens. Racemus 10-18 cm. longus, 2,5-3 cm. latus; bracteae angustissimae ovario pedicellata paulo breviores; perianthium 5 mm. longum. Sepala similia, anguste elliptica (5 X 1,5 mm.), utrinque obtuse attenuata. Petala asymmetrica, margine inferiore late dilatata, basi 2.5 mm. lata. Labellum late ventricosum, perconcavum, obscure 4-nervium apice trilobum, lobis angustis, acutis, medio lateralibus crassiore; calcar bursiforme (1 X 1 mm.). Ovarium post anthesim apice in collum angustum 2 mm. longum coarctatum, cum pedicello 10 cm. longum.
Help wanted to an English translation, please write to me, if you know where this can be found.
Habitat:
Distribution:
NE. Madagascar

Benthamia verecunda Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 33: 34 (1924).
Description:

Plants terrestrial, 35-50 cm. tall, tubers 2, oblong fusiform; stem sheathed basally with 2-3 sheaths, bearing 2 leaves, above the middle and several small sheaths distant and very acuminate. Leaves lanceolate-lingulate (10-17 x .7-3.5 cm), acute or acuminate, obviously and gradually attenuate toward the base. Inflorescence elongated (nearly 30 cm long), loosely many flowered flowers unilateral or nearly so, greenish, 4-4.5 mm long without the pedicel); bracts lanceolate, very acuminate, the inferiors generally longer than the flower. Sepals oblong-lingulate obtuse, 1 veined, 3 5 mm long. Petals narrowly oblong, obtuse, 2 veined, longer than the sepals, Labellum oblong (3.5 x 2 mm), slightly concave basally, trilobed in the upper third, median lobe oval, thickened apically 3 times larger than the triangular laterals, spur nearly glabulous (1 mm diameter). very rounded apically. Anther short, provided with a tall, obtuse apicule, staminodes very narrow equal to the length of the anther: rostellum with the median lobe thick and obtuse. Pedicel 6 mm long.
Habitat:

In mossy forests, from 1200 m alt. flowering April
Distribution:

N. Madagascar

Benthamia perfecunda H.Perrier, Notul. Syst. (Paris) 14: 140 (1951).
Description:
Geophyta, glabra, 30-70 cm. alta. Caulis gracilis, infra medium vaginis nigrescentibus obtectus, supra medium folia graminiformia (5-15 X 0,8 cm.) 3-4 gerens. Racemus 6-15 cm. longus, subdensiflorus, 7-10 mm. diametre. Perianthium 1,5 mm. longum. Sepalum posticum oblongum (1,5 X 1 mm.) obtusum, uninervium; lateralia asymmetrica, basi dilatata et labello coalita. Petala uninervia quam sepala lateralia asymmetrica minora. Labellum calciforme, basi dilatatum obscure trinervium, apice obtusum; calcar bursiforme, subbilobulatum, latior (0,6 mm.) quam longior (0,3 mm.). Columna brevis auriculis angustis. Ovarium pedicellatum 3 mm. longum.
Help wanted to an English translation, write to me, if you know where this can be found.
Habitat:
Distribution:
N. Madagascar

Benthamia rostrata Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 33: 33 (1924).
Synonyms:
Platanthera madagascariensis Schltr., Beih. Bot. Centralbl. 34(2): 299 (1916), nom. illeg.
Description:
Plants with the aspects of B. perularioides. Differing by the fact it has 2 radical leaves, the rachis is slightly unilateral the divisions of the flower are slightly longer (4 mm), the labellum rhomboidal and heavily dilate medially and subtrilobed, the spar being filiform and longer (4.5 mm) and the anther apiculate and shorter. The flowers are green or greenish-yellow.
Habitat:
Rock piles and praries, from 2000 m, alt.
Flowering:
February-March.
Distribution:
Madagascar
References:
Flora of Madagascar: vascular plants: 49th family, Orchids / by H. Perrier de La Bathie; published under the auspices of the government of Madagascar and under the direction of H. Humbert; English revision and translation by Steven D. Beckman
Images:
Click on each image to see a larger version.

Habitat/In situ 
benthamia rostrata 
Photograph ©Gilles
Grunenwald. Image used
with kind permission.