Gastrodia papuana

Gastrodia papuana Schltr., Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 1 (1911) 45

Type: Schlechter 18036; 20148 (B, lost)

Slender, erect leafless terrestrial, 12-25 cm high. Rhizome oblongoid, horizontal. Stem more or less flexuose, or nearly straight, with a few distant, closely appressed small sheaths clasping the stem, terete, glabrous, laxly 2-4-flowered. Bracts ovate, obtuse, glabrous, much shorter than the pedicel. Flowers erect, obliquely campanulate. Sepals about 1 cm long, oblong, obtuse, connate up to the apical fourth, glabrous. Lateral sepals at the base concave, forming a very short broadly obtuse mentum. Petals about 0.8 cm long, obliquely linear-ligulate, obtuse, to above the middle adnate to the sepaline tube, clearly shorter than the sepals. Lip 0.6 cm long, below the middle about 0.2 cm wide, elliptic-lanceolate, obtuse, glabrous, at the base with two large suborbicular glands. Column erect, glabrous, shorter than the lip, stelidia erect, obliquely lanceolate, acute, large, stigma decurrent to above the base of the column. Ovary with pedicel clavate, glabrous, 0.9 cm long, the pedicel after anthesis strongly elongating. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914).

Colours: Flower white tinged light brown, petals darker, lip pure white.

Habitat: Terrestrial in lower montane forest. Altitude 800-1000 m.

Flowering time in the wild: July, September.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 314-45M.JPG

Cultivation: Leafless heteromycotrophic plant, impossible to cultivate under normal conditions.