Dendrobium subpetiolatum Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 1 (1912) 621; 21 (1928) t. 209, fig. 790.
Type: Schlechter 20208 (holo B, lost; iso AMES, BO, E, G, K, L, NSW).
Rhizome very short, roots elongated, filiform, flexuose, glabrous. Stems crowded, patent, strongly laterally flattened, unbranched, to 80 cm by 10 mm, densely many-leaved. Leaf sheaths 1 cm wide, entirely covering the stem, ancipitous. Leaves suberect, elliptic, 7-10 by 2-2.7 cm, base subpetiolate, apex obtuse, keeled below. Inflorescences arising laterally from the stem, subsessile, 2-flowered, spathe very short, laterally compressed, broadly obtuse. Ovary 1.5 cm long, sessile, cylindrical, glabrous. Flowers c. 4 cm across. Dorsal sepal elliptic, 2.3 cm long, apex obtuse. Lateral sepals falcate, much widened at the base, 2.3 cm long, apex obtuse; mentum subglobose, 1.4 cm wide. Petals obliquely elliptic-spathulate, a little shorter than the sepals, apex obtuse. Lip 3-lobed near the apex, 1 by 1.2 cm, cuneate at the base, with bearded basal papillae, inside along the median with sparse, recurved, short, acute papillae; lateral lobes rounded, margin irregular, obtuse; midlobe longer, 3-lobulate, the lateral lobules small, oblong, obtuse, the median much larger than the lateral lobules, semiorbicular, acuminate. Column short, narrowed to the apex; column-foot very long, incurved, inside near the apex with a linear keel. Anther reniform-cucullate, glabrous.
(after Schlechter, 1912).
Colours: Flower white, outside tinged pink, the lip white, the lateral lobules of the midlobe brown, column-foot at the apex orange-red.
Habitat: Epiphyte in lower montane forest. Altitude 800 to 1200 m.
Flowering time in the wild: September, December.
Distribution: New Guinea (endemic).
Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea (Madang and Milne Bay Provinces).
Map: SUBPEMAP.JPG [Dendrobium subpetiolatum Schltr., distribution map.]
Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte.