Dendrobium aristiferum

Dendrobium aristiferum J.J.Sm., Bull. Jard. Bot. Buitenzorg, sér. 2, 2 (1911) 12; Nova Guinea 12, 1 (1913) 60, t. 16, fig. 48.

Type: Kock, de 14 (holo BO).

Stems elongated, quadrangular, 3 mm, internodes 0.5-0.7 cm long. Leaf sheaths with small warts arranged in rows. Leaves patent, twisted at the base so as to lie in one plane, ovate, 1.4-1.7 by 0.9-1 cm, thin coriaceous, margins especially near the apex minutely denticulate-ciliolate, apex acute, with a 0.3-0.4 cm long mucro. Inflorescences lateral from defoliated stems, racemose, very short, 2-3-flowered. Floral bracts suborbicular, 0.7 by 0.55 cm, apex subulate-acuminate, outside verrucose. Pedicel and ovary 2.45 cm long. Flowers 2.2 cm long. Dorsal sepal 0.75 cm by 5.6 mm, outside verruculose; mentum conical, 1.57 cm long, narrowly obtuse. Petals 0.75 cm by 2.8 mm. Lip clawed, spathulate, when flattened 1.85 by 0.9 cm, claw for 1.25 cm adnate to the column-foot, at the base of the blade with a U-shaped appendage; apex cucullate, plicate, margins in the middle fimbriate. Column 0.3 cm long; column-foot at c. 4.8 mm below the apex with a small appressed triangular tooth pointing towards the apex.
(after Smith, 1913).

Colours: Flower bright scarlet ('ponceau red').

Habitat: Epiphyte in lower montane forest, growing in shaded positions. Altitude 900 m.

Flowering time in the wild: March.

Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Jaya Wijaya Regency: Mt. Goliath).

Notes: Dendrobium aristiferum may be recognised by the quadrangular stems and short, broad leaves with a conspicuous 3 to 4 mm long mucro at the apex.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte, keep in shade.