Mediocalcar paradoxum latifolium

Mediocalcar paradoxum (Kraenzl.) Schltr. subsp. latifolium (Schltr.) Schuit., Orchid Monogr. 8 (1997) 56, fig. 17, pl. 3a

Basionym: Mediocalcar latifolium

Roots 1 mm thick. Cataphylls 5-8, patent, flattened, subfalcate, glabrous, acute, keeled. Pseudobulbs erect to suberect, 1.5-5.5 cm apart, broadly conical to semiglobose, dorso-ventrally compressed, keeled, 0.7-1.5 cm long, 5-10 mm across at the base; base not or slightly elongated. Leaves petiolate, the blade (narrowly) elliptic to suborbicular, rarely narrowly obovate (index 1.3-5), (1.5-)2.5-8(-10) cm by (10-)15-33 mm, petiole 5-10 mm long; apex obtuse, more or less unequally bilobed, mucronate, with the mucro (much) longer than the lobules. Inflorescences almost always in pairs. Peduncle 2-3 cm long, at the apex with a triangular to subulate bract c. 3 mm long. Pedicel and ovary 12-22 mm long. Flowers vase-shaped to urceolate, more or less oblique, 10-15 mm long. Synsepalum 11-15.5 mm long and 16-19.5 mm wide when cut open and flattened; free tips only slightly spreading, obtuse to subacute, 3-6 mm long. Lateral sepals more or less keeled. Petals linear-lanceolate to narrowly elliptic (index 4-8), 7-12 by 1-1.7 mm; apex acute to acuminate. Lip 7-12 by 3-4 mm in natural position, the blade broadly ovate when flattened; claw 3.5-5 by 2-2.5 mm, auricles rather inconspicuous, reflexed; apex acute to acuminate, straight; margins erect, clasping the column; spur recurved, 2.5-4.5 mm long, 1.5-2.5 mm wide just below the mouth. Column clavate, 5-6.5 mm long, 2-2.5 mm wide at the apex, foot short, 1-1.5 mm long. Fruit narrowly cylindrical-ellipsoid, 20-34 by 3 mm. (After Schuiteman, 1997)

Colours: Flowers bright red to pinkish red with yellowish or greenish tips to the sepals, petals and lip. Leaves light green to bluish green, sometimes with purplish veins when young.

Habitat: Epiphyte in montane forest; 850-2900 m.

Flowering time in the wild: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Indonesia); Papua New Guinea. See map: 436-62M.JPG.

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte, requires shaded position.

Notes: In its 'typical' form this subspecies is very distinctive with its broadly elliptic, bluish green leaves and short, fat, keeled pseudobulbs. Other specimens may approach subsp. robustum in one way or another, making it sometimes difficult to thell these two subspecies of Mediocalcar paradoxum apart.