Dendrobium debile Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 1 (1912) 580; 21 (1928) t. 193, fig. 725.
Type: Schlechter 18264; 19160 (B, lost).
Rhizome very short, roots elongated, filiform, flexuose, glabrous. Stems crowded, patent, slender, weak, flexuose, terete, 1-2 mm, laxely many-leaved, unbranched or sparsely branched. Leaf sheaths distant. Leaves patent or sometimes erect-patent, linear, 3.5-5 by 0.15-0.25 cm, apex acute. Inflorescences lateral from the stem, short; peduncle very short, 2-flowered, spathe short. Floral bracts hyaline. Pedicel and ovary 1.2 cm long, slender, glabrous. Flowers c. 2.5 cm across. Dorsal sepal narrowly lanceolate, 1.4 cm long, apex elongate-acuminate. Lateral sepals obliquely narrowly lanceolate, widened at the base, 1.4 cm long, apex elongate-acuminate; mentum 0.3 cm long, obtuse. Petals obliquely linear, a little shorter than the sepals, apex elongated-acuminate. Lip 3-lobed below the middle, 0.7 by 0.45 cm, (inside sparsely covered with subulate papillae,) with a median keel extending from the base to the middle of the midlobe, on either side with a shorter parallel keel extending from the base of the lateral lobes to the middle of the midlobe; lateral lobes falcate-lanceolate, small, subacute; midlobe obcuneate-quadrate, in front 0.4 cm wide, margins slightly undulate, apex truncate, subretuse, with a large pointed projection in the middle. Column short, glabrous, clinandrium 3-lobulate, the lateral lobules lanceolate, subacute, serrulate, the median obtuse with a small tooth on either side; column-foot linear-ligulate, 0.3 cm long, concave. Anther rounded-cucullate, glabrous.
(after Schlechter, 1912).
Colours: Sepals and petals light yellow, lip whitish with dark red margins.
Habitat: Epiphyte on tall trees in lower montane forest. Altitude 1100 m.
Flowering time in the wild: January.
Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).
Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea (Madang Province: Finisterre Mountains).
Map: DEBILMAP.JPG [Dendrobium debile Schltr., distribution map.]
Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte.