Dendrobium hellerianum

Dendrobium hellerianum A.D.Hawkes, Lloydia 20 (1957) 120 (nom. nov.).

Basionym: Dendrobium inflatum Schltr.

Rhizome very short, roots elongated, filiform, flexuose, glabrous. Stems crowded, patent, strongly laterally flattened, 60-80 cm by 13 mm, many-leaved. Leaf sheaths 1.3 cm wide, entirely covering the stem, ancipitous. Leaves suberect, elliptic, 10-11 by 3-3.5 cm, base subpetiolate, apex obtuse, keeled below. Inflorescences arising laterally from the stem, subsessile, 2-flowered, spathe very short, laterally compressed, broadly obtuse. Ovary 1.3 cm long, glabrous. Flowers c. 4 cm across. Dorsal sepal elliptic, 2.2 cm long, apex obtuse. Lateral sepals obliquely elliptic, much widened at the base, 2.2 cm long, apex obtuse; mentum subglobose, 1.5 cm wide. Petals obliquely elliptic-spathulate, a little shorter than the sepals, apex obtuse. Lip 3-lobed near the apex, 1.1 by 1.3 cm, very broadly cuneate at the base, at the base with fascicles of branched hairs, near the middle with similar more sparse hairs; lateral lobes rounded, front margin serrulate-ciliate, apex obtuse; midlobe hardly extending beyond the lateral lobes, semiorbicular, shortly acuminate. Column short, to the apex conspicuously narrowed, clinandrium 3-lobulate, the lateral lobules small, obtuse, the median small, tooth-like; column-foot linear, very long, incurved, at the base with a bilobulate callus, near the apex minutely verruculose.
(after Schlechter, 1912).

Colours: Flower white, inside slightly tinged pink, mentum inside with small lemon-yellow warts, lip with orange-red hairs at the base, column yellow with an orange-yellow foot.

Habitat: Epiphyte in lower montane forest. Altitude 1200 m.

Flowering time in the wild: June.

Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua; Papua New Guinea (Madang and Morobe Provinces).

Map: HELLEMAP.JPG [Dendrobium hellerianum A.D.Hawkes, distribution map.]

Notes: A member of the Dendrobium eriopexis alliance.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte.