AFRICAN

ORCHIDS

Platylepis A. Rich. in Mém. Soc. Hist. Nat. Paris 4: 34 (1828), nom. conserv.
Synonyms:
Diplogastra Welw. ex Rchb.f. in Flora 48: 183 (1865).
Erporchis Thouars Hist. Orchid. [Fl. Iles Austr. Afr.]: tab. gen., fig. 28 (1822), orth. var.
Erporkis Thouars in Nouv. Bull. Sci. Soc. Philom. Paris 1: 317 (1809)
Notiophrys Lindl.in J. Linn. Soc., Bot. 1: 189 (1857).
Description:
Terrestrial herb, stems creeping at the base, roots tomentose. Leaves ovate, petiolate, sheathing at the base. Upper stem with leaves reduced to sheaths; inflorescence terminal, racemose. Bracts conspicuous, broad, glandular-hairy, longer than the ovaries. Sepals free; petals partly joined to dorsal sepal; lip adnate to the column for part of its length, reflexed at the apex, saccate at the base, with calli of various shapes. Column elongate; clinandrium and anther erect, oblong; rostellum erect, 2-lobed, set in front of the anther. Stigma oblong.
Type species: Platylepis occulta (Thouars) Rchb.f.
Distribution:
Tropical Africa, South Africa and the Mascarene Islands.
Cultivation:
Easily maintained in a shallow pall of rich soil with leaf litter that is kept moist. A group of plants makes an attractive addition to a collection of orchids or pot plants. The pall should be kept in a well-shaded position where the night temperature does not fall below 15 C. The day time temperatures can be much higher, but shade and high humidity must also be maintained.
Species:

Platylepis bigibbosa H.Perrier N. & NW. Madagascar.
Platylepis glandulosa (Lindl.) Rchb.f. Trop. & S. Africa.
Platylepis margaritifera Schltr. NE. Madagascar.
Platylepis occulta (Thouars) Rchb.f. W. Indian Ocean.
Platylepis polyadenia Rchb.f. Comoros, Madagascar.
Platylepis rufa (Frapp.) Schltr. Réunion.
Platylepis viscosa (Rchb.f.) Schltr. Réunion.
Platylepis xerostele Ormerod Cameroon.

World Checklist of Monocotyledons. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; http://www.kew.org/wcsp/monocots/ accessed 1/16/2010
Bibliography and References:
Bosser J, Cribb PJ. 2003 Contribution a l'etude des Orchidaceae de Madagascar, des Comores et des Mascareignes. XXXIV. Bathiorchis, nouveau genre monotypique de Madagascar. (Contribution to the study of Orchidaceae from Madagascar, the Comoro and Mascarene islands. XXXIV. Bathiorchis, a new monotypic genus from Madagascar.) Adansonia 25. (2): 229-231 (2003)
Clements MA. 1995 Reproductive biology in relation to phylogeny of the Orchidaceae especially the tribe Diurideae. PhD Thesis: Australian National University: Australia. 339 pp. + appendices. ORCHIDS q169. LM.