Malaxis diploceras

Malaxis diploceras (Schltr.) P.F.Hunt, Kew Bull. 24 (1970) 79

Basionym: Microstylis diploceras

Epiphytic, erect, almost stemless, 8-12 cm high. Rhizome very short; roots filiform, elongated, flexuose, puberulous. Stem very short, pseudobulbous, somewhat compressed, ovoid, 1-1.8 cm long, in the middle 0.7-1 cm wide, with c. 6 distichous leaves. Leaves erect-patent, oblanceolate-elliptic, finely apiculate, gradually narrowed towards the base, at the base dilated, clasping the stem, 4-8 cm long, above the middle 0.8-1.4 cm wide. Inflorescence erect, angular, glabrous, with a few, distant, bract-like scales; rachis rather laxly 4-8-flowered. Floral bracts erect-patent, ovate-lanceolate, acuminate, glabrous, almost as long as the ovary. Flowers patent, glabrous. Median sepal ovate, obtuse, 0.5 cm long. Lateral sepals oblique, broadly elliptic, subapiculate, 0.4 cm long. Petals obliquely linear, subobtuse, glabrous, as long as the median sepal. Lip long-sagittate, c. 0.3 cm long [excluding the auricles], at the base 0.25 cm wide, in front above the broad base wavy-narrowed, oblong, broadly obtuse, at the apex subretuse with an apiculum, lamella or callus lyriform-curved, extending from below the middle to below the apex; auricles lanceolate-ligulate, subobtuse, falcate, with the apices quite close, c. 0.15 cm long. Column short, dorsally in the middle with two horn-like, recurved, somewhat laterally compressed calli; stelidia ligulate-prolonged, large. Anther ovate-cucullate, slightly cordate, obtuse, dorsally umbonate. Ovary cylindrical, glabrous, 6-ribbed, including the pedicel 0.5 cm long. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914)

Colours: Flowers yellowish, lip orange-yellow, column dark greenish blue.

Habitat: Epiphyte in lower montane forest, growing in shaded positions; 1100 m.

Flowering time in the wild: January.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 431-120M.JPG.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing epiphyte, requires shaded position.