Dendrobium crispilinguum P.J.Cribb, Orchid Rev. 88 (1980) 145; Orchadian 6 (1980) 178, fig.
Type: NGF (Millar) 15917 (holo K, iso LAE).
An epiphytic herb. Stems cane-like, up to 2 m tall but usually less than 1 m. Leaves coriaceous, suberect, ovate-lanceolate or lanceolate, acute, 7.5-12 by 1.5-3.5 cm, articulated to a slightly inflated tubular sheath up to 4 cm long. Inflorescences 1-several, suberect or spreading, up to 40 cm long, about 20-flowered; bracts lanceolate, acuminate, 6-8 mm long. Flowers: pedicel and ovary 2.6-3 mm long. Dorsal sepal recurved and slightly twisted, lanceolate, acute, 2.6-3 by 0.4 cm, undulate; lateral sepals reflexed, falcate, lanceolate, acute, 2.6 by 0.7 cm; mentum 5-6 mm long. Petals linear, acute, 2.5-3.3 by 0.2 cm, 1-3 times twisted. Lip 3-lobed, oblong in outline, 1.8 by 1 cm; side-lobes oblong, truncate, with erose front margins; midlobe not recurved, lanceolate, acuminate, 1.1 by 0.6 cm, with undulate-crispate and erose margins; callus of five ridges all slightly raised at apex on basal part of midlobe. Column 5 mm long, erose-denticulate at apex; anther cap green.
(after Cribb, 1986).
Stems orange when dry. Flowers cream or yellowish with a white or greenish lip heavily suffused with lilac-purple.
Habitat: Epiphyte on trees in montane forest. Altitude 1100 to 1600 m.
Distribution: New Guinea.
Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea (Highland Provinces).
Map: CRISPMAP.JPG [Dendrobium crispilinguum P.J.Cribb, distribution map, redrawn from P. Cribb, Kew Bull. 41 (1986) 658, map 6.]
Notes: Dendrobium crispilinguum is an attractive but relatively small-flowered orchid probably most closely related to Dendrobium magistratus, another of the few montane species of the section. It differs, however, in its distinctively coloured flowers with creamy white sepals and petals and a boldly violet-veined lip. The lip is also quite different in shape with a broader ovate midlobe with boldly crisped and undulate margins, oblong side-lobes with entire margins and a callus of five ridges all slightly thickened at their apices on the base of the midlobe.
(after Cribb, 1986).
Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte, requiring a high humidity throughout the year.