Ceratostylis alpina

Ceratostylis alpina J.J.Sm., Bull. Jard. Bot. Buitenzorg, sér. 2, 13 (1914) 62

Type: Pulle (Versteeg) 2440 (holo BO; iso L 2x)

Rhizome ascending, strongly branched; sheaths becoming larger upwards, distichous, overlapping, appressed, acutely acuminate, membranous, when dried raised-veined, upper sheaths enveloping the basal part of the stem, to 6-7 cm long. Stems fascicled, terete, carnose, 13-26 cm long, 0.27 cm diam., 1-leaved. Leaf erect, terete, obtuse, slightly apiculate, above up to the apex narrowly but deeply grooved, 3.5-6 cm long, 0.23 cm diam.; sheath short, 0.45 cm long. Inflorescences fascicled, 1-flowered, mostly with a single flower, peduncles finely villose, 0.48 cm long, with a few small, subovate, at the base with shortly tubular, obtuse, large, concave, glabrous, 0.4 cm long scales. Floral bract laxly clasping the ovary, a little shorter than the ovary, obtuse, at the base very shortly tubular, glabrous, membranous, 0.28 cm long. Flower 0.73 cm long. Median sepal oblong, somewhat narrowed towards the apex, obtuse, 3-nerved, almost 0.4 cm long, 0.17 cm wide. Lateral sepals with a rather large, obliquely oblong-obovate, strongly concave lobule decurrent on and clearly exceeding the column-foot, free part obliquely oblong, thickly obtusely apiculate, 3-nerved, slightly over 0.4 cm long, in total 0.73 cm long, almost 0.25 cm wide; mentum subclavate-obovate, making an acute angle with the ovary, at the apex inflated, broadly obtuse, dorsally more or less compressed, sparsely pilose, 0.25 cm long. Petals lanceolate, in front hardly dilated, pointed, subacute, 1-nerved, 0.38 by 0.13 cm. Lip curved, concave, convex underneath, rather shortly and rather broadly clawed, when flattened almost spathulate, in the apical part carnose-thickened, broadly obtuse, in basal half finely ciliate, with two thin, straight, puberulous keels from the base to beyond the middle, with a third short, thicker rib in the apical part, in total 0.63 cm long, claw at the base very shortly 2-auriculate, 0.13 cm wide, blade elliptic, 0.46 by 0.3 cm. Column 0.26 cm long, arms oblong, obtuse, outside convex, inside concave. Anther shorter than the column-arms, cucullate, broadly obtuse. Column-foot making an acute angle with the ovary and an obtuse angle with the column, linear, straight, at the apex incurved at almost right angles, 0.18 cm long. Ovary 6-grooved, at the apex oblong, somewhat finely villose, 0.4 cm long. (After Smith, 1915).

Colours: Flower red-brown.

Habitat: Epiphyte in upper montane forest. Altitude 3000-3250 m.

Flowering time in the wild: February, July.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Indonesia); Papua New Guinea. See map: 125-6M.JPG

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte.