AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Holothrix orthoceras (Harv.) Rchb.f., Otia Bot. Hamburg.: 119 (1881).
Homotypic Synonyms:
Tryphia orthoceras Harv., Thes. Cap. 2: 4 (1863).
Description:
Terrestrial herb 10–26 cm tall. Tubers up to 20 × 15 mm, ovoid. Leaves 2, appressed to ground, 3–6.5 × 1.5–4.2 cm, ovate, glabrous, dark green with whitish veining. Scape sparsely hairy, without sheaths. Inflorescence 6–11 cm long, up to 20-flowered, flowers secund; ovary 6 mm long; bracts 4–5 mm long, lanceolate, acuminate. Flowers white with 5 purple lines on lip, one running to each lobe.Sepals green, sparsely hairy, 2.5–3 × 1 mm, ovate. Petals 3–5 × 1 mm, lanceolate, acute, erect. Lip 7–12 × 3.5–5 mm, with 1 pair of lobes 1–2 mm long near base; mid-lobe 4–6 mm long, cuneate with 3 shallow teeth. Spur 2–2.8 mm long, conical.
Habitat:
Submontane grassland or amongst mossy rocks, sometimes in heavy shade 1500–2050 m.
Distribution:
S. Trop. & S. Africa
References:
Wild Orchids of Southern Africa Stewart, Linder, Schelpe & Hall 1982; Flora Zambesiaca Vol 11 Part 1 Pope 1995; Orchids of Southern Africa Linder & Kurzweil 1999; Field Guide to the Orchids of Northern South Africa and Swaziland McMurty, Grobler, Grobler & Burns 2008; Terrestrial African Orchids, A select Review John S. Ball 2009
Images:
Click on each image to see a larger version.

Habitat/In situ  Habitat/In situ  Habitat/In situ  Habitat/In situ 
Holothrix orthoceras, 01
 
Holothrix orthoceras, 02
 
 Holothrix orthoceras, 03 Holothrix orthoceras, 04
 
Photograph© Cameron
McMaster. Image used
with kind permission. 
Photograph© Cameron
McMaster. Image used
with kind permission. 
Photograph© Cameron
McMaster. Image used
with kind permission. 
Photograph© Cameron
McMaster. Image used
with kind permission.