Liparis caespitosa

Liparis caespitosa (Thouars) Lindl., Edwards's Bot. Reg. (1825) sub t. 882

Basionym: Malaxis caespitosa

Epiphytic, erect, small, 3-10 cm high. Rhizome very short; roots filiform, elongated, flexuose, glabrous. Pseudobulbs crowded, somewhat laterally compressed, broadly ovate, 1-leaved, 0.7-1 cm high, above the base 0.4-0.7 cm wide. Leaf erect, oblanceolate-ligulate, acute or apiculate, gradually narrowed towards the base, glabrous, 4.5-9 cm long, above the middle 0.35-1 cm wide. Inflorescence erect, ancipitous, without peduncle-scales, glabrous, often shorter than the leaf, rarely somewhat longer; rachis more or less laxly flowered, occasionally rather dense, 5-15-flowered, erect. Floral bracts erect-patent, linear-lanceolate, acuminate, often distinctly surpassing the flowers. Flowers erect-patent, glabrous. Sepals recurved, oblong, obtuse, c. 0.25 cm long. Later sepals oblique. Petals recurved, linear, obtuse, about as long as the sepals. Lip elliptic, 0.25 cm long, in basal half hardly more than 0.13 cm wide, slightly constricted in apical half, at the base inside with a subquadrate callus, at the apex shortly and obtusely apiculate. Column slightly curved, glabrous, c. 0.15 cm long, slightly dilated towards the base. Anther subreniform, obtuse. Ovary with pedicel glabrous, c. 0.3 cm long. Fruit sharply triangular in cross-section, oblongoid, as long as the pedicel, c. 0.4 cm long. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914, as Liparis neoguineensis Schltr.)

Colours: Flowers yellowish green.

Habitat: Epiphyte in hill and montane forest, rarely terrestrial among rocks; 300 to 2300 m.

Flowering time in the wild: January, April, May, June, July, August, September, November, December.

Distribution: Malesia (Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi, Moluccas, New Guinea, Philippines), Madagascar, Mascarenes, tropical Asia, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Fiji.

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Indonesia); Papua New Guinea. See map: 416-87M.JPG.

Cultivation: Warm to cool growing epiphyte.

Notes: A very common and unusually widespread but quite inconspicuous little orchid.