Liparis alpina

Liparis alpina P.Royen, Alp. Fl. New Guinea 2 (1979) 700, fig. 245

Type: Balgooy, van 763 (holo L)

Small, erect terrestrial to 15 cm high. Rhizome short. Cataphylls glabrous, the uppermost leaf-like and up to 5 by 1.5 cm. Pseudobulbs c. 1.4 by 0.5 cm, 1-leaved. Leaf patent, coriaceous, glabrous, narrowly elliptic, 4-5.5 by 1-2 cm, falcate-plicate, acute. Inflorescence 9-12 cm long, 6-9-flowered, at the base enveloped by 3-4 broadly ovate, up to 2 by 1.5 cm large, acute, conduplicate scales. Peduncle glabrous, 3-5 cm long, in fruit up to 7 cm long, ribbed. Rachis 6-7 cm long, glabrous. Floral bracts ovate, 0.5-0.9 by 0.2-0.3 cm, caudate-acuminate, auricled at base, 1-nerved, slightly warty on outside near tip. Flowers not resupinate but in some flowers pedicel later twisting and flowers resupinate. Median sepal oblong-ovate, 1.1 by 0.3 cm, truncate, base auricled, 3-nerved, with involute margins, on inside with a flat, broad callus in apical 0.3 cm, 3-nerved, glabrous. Lateral sepals similar to the median sepal but broader and less distinctly auricled at the base, subobtuse, with revolute margins, 3-nerved. Petals glabrous, linear, 1.05 by 0.1 cm, at the base abruptly widened, subacute, 1-nerved, with involute margins. Lip obovate-spathulate in outline, 0.9 by 0.55 cm, constricted in basal third with the margins involute; basal part 0.3 by 0.3 cm, with a median, oblong, 0.15 by 0.1 cm large, slightly 2-lobed, towards the base decurrent callus; constricted part 0.15 by 0.3 cm, on inside with a slightly protruding callus; apical part obovate-orbicular, 0.5 by 0.5 cm, acute, apical margin dentate, entire lip glabrous, 7-nerved at base but up to 13-nerved in apical part. Column sigmoid, 0.6 by 0.1 cm, at apex truncate, 2-winged, on inside narrowly winged on either side, in basal half with two not well marked elongate calli on either side. Anther flattish cucullate, 0.1 by 0.12 cm, distinctly 3-lobed, 2-crested above. Pedicel glabrous, 0.5-0.6 cm long; ovary glabrous, narrowly oblong-obovoid, 0.3 by 0.1 cm, 6-ribbed. Fruit obovoid, 0.9 by 0.5 cm, distinctly 3-winged and with three flat ribs, glabrous. (After van Royen, 1979)

Colours: Flowers greenish yellow with darker green lip.

Habitat: Terrestrial on wet open slopes, mossy rock faces and subalpine tussock grassland; 2300-3575 m.

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

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 416-8M.JPG.

Cultivation: Cool growing terrestrial, requires light position.

Notes: Similar to Liparis altigena, from which it differs in the smaller stature and in the leaf-like cataphylls.