AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Centrostigma occultans (Welw. ex Rchb.f.) Schltr., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 53: 523 (1915).
Homotypic Synonyms:
Habenaria occultans Welw. ex Rchb.f., Flora 48: 178 (1865).
Heterotypic Synonyms:
Habenaria schlechteri Kraenzl. ex Schltr., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 20(50): 35 (1895).
Centrostigma nyassanum Schltr., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 53: 523 (1915).
Centrostigma schlechteri (Kraenzl. ex Schltr.) Schltr., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 53: 523 (1915).
Description:
Terrestrial herb 55–75 cm tall, drying dark brown; tubers c. 2–3 cm long, globose or ellipsoid. Stem leafy; the lowermost leaves sheathing, the remainder semi-erect, up to 15.5 × 2 cm, lanceolate, acute. Inflorescence up to 16 cm long, 1–10-flowered; ovary 3 cm long, pedicel 3 cm long, erect; bracts up to 6.5 cm long, lanceolate, acuminate. Flowers pale green to yellow-green. Dorsal sepal erect, 13–20 × 10–15 mm, ovate, convex; lateral sepals deflexed, 14–25 × 3–6 mm, obliquely lanceolate, acuminate. Petals 12–18 × 3–3.5 mm, obliquely lanceolate, acute, lying inside the dorsal sepal. Lip 3-lobed, claw 1.5–3 mm long, attached to base of column; mid-lobe deflexed, 18–25 × 1–4 mm, linear; side lobes swept back, 18–25 × 2–4 mm, the last c.10 mm pectinate. Spur slender, slightly swollen at apex, 10–15 cm long. Anther 8–11 mm high, canals c. 10 mm long. Upper and lower lobes of stigma 8–9 mm long. Auricles 1–1.5 mm long.
Habitat:
Dambo and marshy localities 1250–1700 m.
Distribution:
Tanzania to Angola and Northern Prov.