Dendrobium dillonianum

Dendrobium dillonianum A.D.Hawkes & A.H.Heller, Lloydia 20 (1957) 119 (nom. nov.).

Basionym: Dendrobium sacculiferum J.J.Sm.

Stems elongated, slender, branching, flexuose, 33 cm long, internodes to 1.4 cm long. Leaf sheaths ribbed-angular, verrucose. Leaves patent, twisted at the base so as to lie in one plane, oblong-ovate, 0.75-0.95 by 0.23-0.33 cm, rigid, margins especially near the apex cartilaginous-crenulate, apex acutely apiculate. Inflorescences lateral from defoliated stems, racemose, very short, 1-flowered. Floral bracts broadly ovate, 0.23 cm long, apex acuminate, verruculose. Pedicel and ovary 1.65 cm long, clavate, obtusely triangular in cross-section. Flowers c. 2 cm long. Dorsal sepal 0.9 cm by 6 mm; mentum conical, 1 cm long. Petals 0.85 cm by 4.7 mm, margins near apex slightly minutely erose. Lip extending to the apex of the column, when flattened 1.3 by 0.85 cm, apex cucullate, subtrilobulate, in the middle subulate-pectinate, with the teeth decreasing in length to the sides. Column 0.26 cm long; column-foot 1.15 cm long, at c. 1/3 below the apex with a membrane-covered cavity.
(after Smith, 1929).

Colours: Flowers (including ovary) dark red, apex of column bluish violet.

Habitat: Epiphyte in low, mossy, thin-stemmed forest with Vaccinium. Altitude 1400 m.

Flowering time in the wild: September.

Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).

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

Notes: Dendrobium dillonianum is a small-leaved member of the Calyptrochilus group with 1-flowered inflorescences. It is very similar to Dendrobium parvifolium and Dendrobium lamii.

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte.