Dryadorchis dasystele

Dryadorchis dasystele Schuit. & de Vogel, J. Orchideenfreund 11 (2004) 209

Type: Leiden cult. (de Vogel & Vogel) 20030677 (holo LAE; iso K, L, all spirit mat.), from Papua New Guinea, Tapini, Mt. Bapaoto

Roots glabrous, not branching, c. 0.2 cm diam. Stem unbranched, 2 cm long, rooting at the base. Leaves c. 5, 4.5-9.5 by 1.4-1.8 cm, twisted 90 degrees at the base, spreading in one plane, somewhat oblique, subfalcate, linear to narrowly elliptic, soft-coriaceous, adaxial surface velvety-opaque, keeled below, margins thinner, fringed with minute, irregular, hyaline teeth, apex mucronate, unequally bilobulate, the adaxial lobule largest, more or less subfalcate, subacute. Inflorescence arising from the axil of the lowest leaf, patent, racemose, c. 6-flowered. Peduncle 6.5 cm long, terete, in the apical part gradually thickened towards the rachis, with two distant, tubular, obtuse scales c. 0.5 cm long. Rachis pointing downward, elongating, finally 1.8 cm long, 0.4 cm diam., angular, winged, with the wings sparsely irregularly serrulate. Floral bracts 0.2-0.5 by 0.3-0.4 cm, patent, becoming smaller towards the apex of the rachis, semi-orbicular, cupular, apex broadly rounded. Pedicel and ovary terete, glabrous, 0.4 cm long. Flowers opening successively or in pairs, ephemeral, widely opening, c. 2.3 cm across, with a faint smell like Tiger Balm. Sepals concave, obtuse. Median sepal 1.46 by 0.82 cm when flattened, elliptic. Lateral sepals 1.33 by 0.85 cm, obliquely elliptic. Petals 1.4 by 0.7 cm, obliquely elliptic-obovate, obtuse. Lip 3-lobed, 0.62 by 0.68 cm when spread, hinged by a short claw, 0.05 by 0.15 cm large, to the column-foot; lateral lobes 0.28 by 0.3 cm, obliquely subfalcate-obovate, broadly rounded, suberect-patent; mid-lobe 0.34 by 0.35 cm, very fleshy, broadly pear-shaped, dorsoventrally flattened, at the base with a narrow cavity, otherwise solid, at the opening of the cavity with a raised, bilobulate callus with rounded lobules, in front of the callus with a beak-like, triangular projection (which is the actual apex of the mid-lobe), abaxial surface of the lip finely densely pubescent, on the margins of the callus lobules with longer, capitate hairs. Column stout, 0.65 cm long, 0.36 cm wide near the apex, slightly incurved, strongly swollen in front below the stigma, minutely pubescent, just below the stigma with a broad transverse band of numerous, c. 0.07 cm long, stiff hairs tipped with a small knob; foot straight, 0.22 cm long. Stigma large, concave, suborbicular, 0.3 cm wide; rostellum 3-lobed, the lateral lobes subulate, 0.11 cm long, the median lobe more narrowly subulate, 0.06 cm long; clinandrium rather flat, with two shallow concavities separated by a low smooth ridge. Anther 0.16 by 0.21 cm, cucullate, transversely elliptic, apex truncate-emarginate, erose. Pollinia 4, hemispherical, subequal, in two slightly dorsoventrally compressed, spherical masses 0.09 cm across. Stipe 0.17 by 0.07 cm, narrowly ovate-oblong, cucullate, apex obtuse; viscidium 0.06 by 0.065 cm, rounded subquadrangular. Fruit not seen. (After Schuiteman & de Vogel, 2004).

Colours: Leaves dull green tinged purple above, dull dark purple below. Whole inflorescence, including the bracts, dull dark purple. Sepals and petals outside whitish, inside light yellow with white margins, densely spotted orange-brown, the spots becoming darker towards the apex. Lip at the base whitish with a transverse purple-brown bar; lateral lobes ochrish yellow with a C-shaped red-brown band parallel to the margin, lateral margins bright yellow; mid-lobe outside white with violet spots, inside pale brown, its projecting tip white with a deep violet apex; callus white with pale brown apical band. Column light yellow, dorsally at the base with two red-brown blotches, in front below the stigma red-brown, the hairs yellowish with violet knobs. Column-foot whitish. Anther yellow; pollinia dark yellow. Pedicel and ovary pale yellowish green.

Habitat: Epiphyte in montane forest. Altitude 1300 m.

Flowering time in the wild: Not known

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 258-5M.JPG

Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte.

Note: Differs from the other species of Dryadorchis in the knob-tipped hairs covering much of the column.