Genus Aerides

Aerides Lour.,
Fl. Cochinch. 2 (1790) 525

Monopodial epiphytic, rarely terrestrial plants. Stem elongated, with many leaves arranged in two rows. Leaves sheathing at the base, glabrous, deciduous, duplicate, leathery. Inflorescence lateral, a raceme or rarely a panicle. Flowers medium-sized, showy. Sepals free. Petals free, often fairly different in shape from the dorsal sepal. Lip spurred, with the spur usually pointing forwards; at the base usually rather stiffly hinged with the column-foot, or immobile; three-lobed, mid-lobe dorso-ventrally flattened. Column-foot present, relatively long. Pollinia 2, cleft, solid, caudicles absent, stipe linear, often widened at the apex, viscidium present.

Tropical continental Asia, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea. About 20 species; in New Guinea one, non-endemic, species [Aerides quinquevulnera Lindl.].

Epiphytes in the canopy of lowland forest.

A popular genus in horticulture, related to Rhynchostylis and Vanda, from which it is mainly distinguished by the presence of a well-developed column-foot.