AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Benthamia cuspidata H.Perrier, Bull. Soc. Bot. France 81: 29 (1934).
Description:

Plants epiphytic, generally 45 cm tall stem sheathed basally by a single sheath. bearing above this sheath and below the flowers, 4 leaves, all obtuse and apiculate apically but differing in form and size, the 1st. very widely oval (14 x 6 cm) the next 2 narrower and longer, the 4th. narrowly lanceolate-acute (15 x2.2 cm then with 5-6 sheaths with a narrowly acute limbus. Rachis (nearly 25 x 2.5 cm) cylindrical, very dense, flowers very numerous: bracts linear, the inferiors much longer than the flowers; flowers 6 mm long (without the pedicel) at the base of the inflorescence, becoming shorter (4.S mm) apically. Sepals elliptical-obtuse. I veined. Petals longer than the sepals, thick, very obtuse and obscurely 2 veined. Petals longer than the sepals, thick, very obtuse and obscurely 2 veined. Labellum thick, 3 veined, trilobed, the lateral lobes shorter than the median, reduced to an obtuse tooth, very obvious but a fifth to a sixth the length of the median. which is attenuate toward the obtuse apex; spur scrotiform, compressed, wider than long or the same width as long (1 x 1 .2 mm). Anther small, tipped with a very obtuse apicule; staminodes linear and sickle shaped, twice as long as the anther. Rostellum heavily keeled and obtuse medially, the lateral lobes very small.
Habitat:
Distribution:

NE. Madagascar