Dendrobium oreodoxa

Dendrobium oreodoxa Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 1 (1912) 519; 21 (1923) t. 176, fig. 657.

Type: Schlechter 18804 (holo B, lost; iso AD, BO, G, L, NSW).

Rhizome very short, roots elongated, filiform, flexuose, glabrous. Stems crowded, patent, slender, flexuose, up to 50 cm long, many-leaved; branching. Leaf sheaths entirely covering the stem. Leaves erect-patent, lanceolate, 2.5-6 by 0.4-1.5 cm, apex apiculate. Inflorescences racemose, very short, 1-3-flowered. Floral bracts ovate, much shorter than the pedicel and ovary, apex apiculate. Pedicel and ovary 1.9 cm long, slender, glabrous. Flowers resupinated or not, c. 2.5 cm long. Dorsal sepal broadly elliptic, 1.1 cm long, apex minutely apiculate. Lateral sepals obliquely broadly elliptic, much widened at the base, 1.1 cm long, apex minutely apiculate; mentum obliquely conical, 1.3 cm long, obtuse. Petals obliquely oblong-elliptic, 1 cm long, apex subacute. Lip concave, with a narrow claw, gradually widened towards the obovate apical part, 1.7 cm long, 0.3 cm wide across the claw, near the apex 0.7 cm wide, apical margin pectinate-dentate, plicate, apex hood-like, rounded. Column short, clinandrium 3-lobulate, lateral lobules rounded, the median a little longer, subulate; column-foot ligulate, concave, 1.3 cm long, near the apex with an elliptic cavity. Anther subquadrate-cucullate, emarginate at the back, in front truncate and papillose.
(after Schlechter, 1912).

Colours: Flowers bright scarlet, lip and column orange-red.

Habitat: Epiphyte in montane forest. Altitude 2000 m.

Flowering time in the wild: November.

Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea (Eastern Highlands Province).

Notes: A species with few-flowered inflorescences and bright scarlet flowers, perhaps related to Dendrobium dillonianum and Dendrobium parvifolium, but with larger leaves than either.

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte.