Genus Neuwiedia

Neuwiedia Blume,
in Hoev. & De Vriese, Tijdschr. 1 (1834) 140

Sympodial terrestrial plants without rhizome. Stem short, several- to many-leaved. Leaves spirally arranged, sheathing at the base, glabrous or short hairy, plicate, persistent, convolute, thin-textured. Inflorescence a many-flowered terminal raceme, often pubescent. Flowers small to medium-sized, resupinate, not opening widely, white or yellow. Sepals free. Petals free, somewhat broader than the sepals. Lip without spur, not mobile, not lobed, broader than the petals. Column-foot absent. Three fertile anthers, pollen not aggregated into pollinia, powdery.

Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea. About 10 species; in New Guinea one species [Neuwiedia veratrifolia Blume].

Terrestrial in lowland forest.

Neuwiedia veratrifolia and Apostasia wallichii are the only New Guinea representatives of the small subfamily Apostasioideae. This subfamily consists of terrestrial forest plants with small yellow or white flowers and is restricted to Southeast Asia. Neuwiedia is immediately distinguished from all other orchid genera by the three fertile anthers. That is, if we exclude such oddities as Bulbophyllum triandrum Schltr. (see vol. VI). Neuwiedia veratrifolia is a robust terrestrial orchid with a basal rosette of plicate leaves and a long raceme of smallish yellow flowers that do not open much. Neuwiedia species are not particularly attractive and in addition difficult to keep alive in cultivation, they are therefore hardly ever seen in collections.