Dendrobium cruttwellii

Dendrobium cruttwellii T.M.Reeve, Orchadian 6 (1980) 152 (nom. nov.).

Basionym: Sayeria paradoxa.

A pendent to suberect epiphytic herb. Pseudobulbs often oblique, fusiform, 2-13 by 0.5-1.8 cm, glossy red-brown when dry, 2- or occasionally 3-leaved at apex. Leaves petiolate, coriaceous, suberect, narrowly oblong-elliptic to oblanceolate, acute, 5-16 by 1.6-4 cm; petiole slender, 1-2 cm long. Inflorescence arcuate to pendent, up to 20 cm long, laxly 2-12-flowered; peduncle and rachis wiry, very slender, 6-10 cm long; bracts elliptic, apiculate, 5-7 mm long. Dorsal sepal elliptic-ovate, apiculate, 1.3-1.5 by 0.8-0.9 cm; lateral sepals obliquely oblong-ovate, rounded or apiculate at apex, 1.2-1.5 by 0.8-1 cm; mentum broadly conical, 7.5-8 mm long. Petals elliptic, acute, 1.2-1.3 by 0.55-0.6 cm. Lip entire, somewhat oblong to hexagonal in outline, truncate, 1.1-1.5 by 1.1-1.45 cm, with incurved margins; callus fleshy, 3-ridged. Column denticulate at apex, 2.5 mm long; foot 7-9 mm long.
(after Cribb, 1983).

Colours: Flower whitish or pale green, commonly spotted red on sepals, petals and lip; callus white.

Habitat: Epiphyte on tree trunks in montane forest. Altitude 1500 to 2450 m.

Flowering time in the wild: February, April, May, September.

Distribution: New Guinea.

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea, widespread in the central mountain range, from the Enga Province eastwards.

Map: CRUTTMAP.JPG [Dendrobium cruttwellii T.M.Reeve, distribution map, redrawn from P. Cribb, Kew Bull. 38 (1983) 234, map 2.]

Notes: Dendrobium cruttwellii is allied to Dendrobium simplex but is readily distinguished by its larger glossy red-brown fusiform pseudobulbs, larger leaves with distinct slender petioles, its slender, arcuate, wiry peduncle and red-spotted flowers.
(after Cribb, 1983).

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte, prefers shaded position.