Epipogium roseum

Epipogium roseum (D.Don) Lindl., J. Proc. Linn. Soc., Bot. 1 (1857) 177

Basionym: Limodorum roseum

A leafless herb 5-60 cm tall. Rhizomes embedded only shallowly in the top layer of humus, ovoid, up to 6 by 4 cm, but usually much less, lacking roots. Stems brittle. Inflorescence 5-20 cm long; axis hollow, with sheathing scales. Rachis usually nodding at first, few- to many-flowered. Flowers not opening widely, apparently self-fertilising. Sepals similar, narrowly oblong, acute, 0.7-1.2 by 0.1-0.2 cm. Petals slightly shorter and broader than the sepals. Lip triangular-obovate, concave, more or less enclosing the column, 1 by 0.6-0.7 cm, the upper surface minutely warty in 2 rows which converge towards the apex, the margins erose, decurved at apex, spurred, the spur cylindrical, obtuse, 0.2-0.4 cm long. Column 0.2-0.25 cm long. (After Lewis and Cribb, 1991).

Colours: Stems pale buff to dull yellow. Flowers cream to yellow with rose-pink spots on the lip.

Habitat: Terrestrial in forest. Altitude 150-2100 m.

Flowering time in the wild: April, June, July, October, December.

Distribution: Malesia (Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi, Lesser Sunda Islands, Moluccas, New Guinea, The Philippines), Vietnam, Africa (trop.), Asia (trop.), Australia, ?Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, New Caledonia.

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Indonesia); Papua New Guinea. See map: 279-10M.JPG

Cultivation: Terrestrial, probably parasitic on fungi and probably impossible to grow under normal conditions.