Malaxis laevis

Malaxis laevis (Schltr.) P.F.Hunt, Kew Bull. 24 (1970) 80

Basionym: Microstylis laevis

Terrestrial, erect, simple, 18-30 cm high. Rhizome short; roots filiform, elongated, flexuose, puberulous. Stem short, erect, 4-5-leaved. Leaves erect-patent, petiolate; blade obliquely ovate-lanceolate or elliptic-ovate, acute, at the base rounded or obliquely cuneate, glabrous, margins slightly undulate, 3.5-6 cm long, below the middle 1.7-2.4 cm wide; petiole dilated at the base, sheathing, 1.7-2.5 cm long. Inflorescence slender, erect, glabrous, towards the rachis angular, with a few small bract-like, distant scales; rachis rather laxly 10-20-flowered, up to 7 cm long. Floral bracts pendent, lanceolate, acuminate, shorter than the ovary. Flowers not resupinate, patent. Median sepal oblong, subobtuse, glabrous, 0.55 [‘5.5’] cm long. Lateral sepals oblique suborbicular, subobtuse, glabrous, 0.4 cm long. Petals linear-ligulate, oblique, subacute, as long as the lateral sepals. Lip subreniform, subacute, at the base with lanceolate, acute, 0.25 cm long auricles, glabrous, above quite smooth, 0.25 cm long, above the base 0.35 cm, wide. Column short, dorsally with a horn-like, obtuse outgrowth, glabrous, stelidia elongated, obliquely and unequally bilobulate. Anther ovate-cucullate, obtusely acuminate. Ovary with pedicel glabrous, 0.5 cm long, 6-ribbed. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914)

Colours: Flowers yellowish, lip orange-yellow, column and anther at the apex almost blue.

Habitat: Terrestrial in lower montane forest; 1100 to 1200 m.

Flowering time in the wild: January.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 431-196M.JPG.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing terrestrial, requires shaded position.