Dendrobium codonosepalum

Dendrobium codonosepalum J.J.Sm., Nova Guinea 18 (1935) 51, pl. 10, 31.

Type: Docters van Leeuwen 10402 (holo L).

Rhizome very short. Stems crowded, quadrangular, to more than 40 cm by 3.5 mm, internodes 0.8-1 cm long. Leaf sheaths strongly verrucose. Leaves patent, subovate-oblong, 3.3-3.7 by 1.2-1.5 cm, rigidly coriaceous, margins especially towards the apex minutely but distinctly crenulate, apex acute to subacute, long-mucronate. Inflorescences lateral from defoliated stems, racemose, sessile, very short, few-flowered. Floral bracts broad, verruculose. Pedicel and ovary 1.7 cm long, rounded triangular in cross-section. Flowers c. 3.5 cm long. Dorsal sepal adnate to the lateral sepals, 2.5 cm by 9 mm, free part 0.9 cm long; mentum conical, 1 cm long. Petals 2.1 cm by 4.3 mm. Lip when flattened 1.6 by 0.65 cm, claw for c. 0.8 cm adnate to the column-foot, apex cucullate, sparsely muriculate outside, margin long-fimbriate, the fringes to c. 3 mm long. Column 0.34 cm long; column-foot 1.1 cm long.
(after Smith, 1935).

Colours: Flower brick red, when young with a violet hue.

Habitat: Epiphyte in rainforest. Altitude 250 to 850 m.

Flowering time in the wild: September, November.

Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Puncak Jaya Regency); Papua New Guinea (Southern Highlands Province).

Notes: Dendrobium codonosepalum is highly distinctive on account of the connate sepals, a unique condition in Dendrobium. Otherwise it appears to be related to Dendrobium trichostomum.

Cultivation: Warm growing epiphyte.