Didymoplexis torricellensis

Didymoplexis torricellensis Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 1 (1911) 44

Type: Schlechter 20309 (holo B, lost)

Small erect leafless terrestrial, 6-15 cm high. Stem more or less flexuose or nearly straight, with a few distant, scale-like, obtuse sheaths, terete, glabrous. Raceme rather laxly 3-8-flowered, erect. Bracts minute, scale-like, obtuse. Flowers erect. Median sepal oblong-ligulate, obtuse, dorsally with a keel which is verruculose towards the apex, glabrous, 0.8 cm long, in basal third connate with the petals. Lateral sepals connate to above the middle, obliquely oblong, obtuse, outside with a keel which is verruculose towards the apex, base concave, forming an obtuse short, 0.7 cm long mentum, in basal fourth with the outer margin adnate to the petals. Petals obliquely ligulate, narrowly obtuse, dorsally with a keel which is verruculose towards the apex, almost as long as the median sepal. Lip at the base shortly clawed, cuneate, in front shortly 3-lobed, glabrous, 6.5 mm long, 0.4 cm broad in front, with 3 parallel keels widened to the apex, the middle one decurrent to the base of the mid-lobe, lateral keels a little shorter, lateral lobes rounded, margin subdenticulate, irregular, mid-lobe very small, slightly longer than the lateral lobes, triangular, obtuse. Column slender, semiterete, glabrous, 0.4 cm long, a little widened towards the apex, foot distinct. Anther semiglobose, cucullate, glabrous. Ovary cylindrical, glabrous, about 0.7 cm long. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914).

Colours: Stem blackish violet. Flower white, keels on the sepals and petals grey, crests on the lip golden yellow.

Habitat: Terrestrial in lower montane forest. Altitude 800 m.

Flowering time in the wild: September.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 227-26M.JPG

Cultivation: Leafless heteromycotrophic plant, impossible to cultivate under normal conditions.