AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Holothrix randii Rendle, J. Bot. 37: 208 (1899).
Heterotypic Synonyms:
Holothrix reckii Bolus, Icon. Orchid. Austro-Afric. 3: t. 21 (1913).
Description:
Perennial herb 8-35 cm. high. Tubers ellipsoid, 1-2 cm. long, 0.5-1 cm. in diameter, shortly tomentose. Leaves 2, basal, reniform, up to 3 cm. long and 4 cm. broad, fleshy, glabrous, withered at time of flowering. Scape erect, with 1 or 2 papery sheaths at the base and 3-6 lanceolate acuminate sheaths scattered along its length, pubescent near the base, glabrous above. Inflorescence to 12 cm. long, rather laxly 5-18-flowered. Bracts lanceolate, acuminate, much shorter than the ovary, glabrous. Flowers white. Sepals oblong-lanceolate or broadly lanceolate, the laterals oblique, shortly acuminate or apiculate, 3-4.5 mm. long, 1-nerved. Petals fan-shaped in outline, 10-13 mm. long, the upper half or more divided into 9-13 thread-like lobes 6.5-8.5 mm. long, glabrous. Lip narrowly fan-shaped from a narrow base, a little longer than the petals, the upper half divided into 9-15 thread-like lobes; spur much incurved at the apex, tapering from a broad base, 4.5-6.5 mm. long.
Derivation of specific name:
randii: named after Dr R.F. Rand (1856-1937), English Medical doctor and early plant collector in Zimbabwe.
Habitat:
Dry open grassland and shady woodland c. 1650 m.
Distribution:
Kenya to Northern Prov.
References:
Flora of Tropical East Africa Summerhayes Orchidaceae Part 1 1968; Flora Zambesiaca Vol 11, Part 1, (1995) Author: I. la Croix and P.J. Cribb; African Orchids: XXVII V. S. Summerhayes, Kew Bulletin, Vol. 14, No. 1 (1960), pp. 126-157+iii; La Croix, I. & Cribb, P.J. (1995). Orchidaceae (Part 1) Flora Zambesiaca 11(1)
Images:
Click on each image to see a larger version.

Habitat/In situ Habitat/In situ
Holothrix randii  01 Holothrix randii  02
Photograph© Lourens
Grobler. Image used
with kind permission.
Photograph© Lourens
Grobler. Image used
with kind permission.