Malaxis longispica

Malaxis longispica (Schltr.) P.F.Hunt, Kew Bull. 24 (1970) 81

Basionym: Microstylis longispica

Terrestrial, erect, slender, 30-40 cm high. Rhizome short; roots filiform, elongated, flexuose, puberulous. Stem short, densely 5-8-leaved, rather thick, cylindrical, glabrous. Leaves erect-patent or patent, petiolate; blade obliquely elliptic or ovate-elliptic, acute, glabrous, at the base sometimes almost round, usually cuneate, 4-7.5 cm long, at or below the middle 1.7-2.5 cm wide; petiole dilated at the base, sheathing, 1.3-2 cm long. Inflorescence angular, with a few small, distant, bract-like scales, glabrous; rachis rather densely many-flowered, elongated, up to 27 cm long. Floral bracts deflexed, lanceolate, acuminate, as long as or shorter than the ovary. Flowers patent or pendent, glabrous. Sepals broadly elliptic, c. 0.35 cm long. Lateral sepals oblique. Petals obliquely obovate-oblong, obtuse, glabrous, a little shorter than the sepals. Lip in outline crescent-shaped; blade 3-lobed above the middle, 0.25 cm long, near the middle 0.45 cm wide; lateral lobes with a short, triangular, obtuse outer angle, with 3 subfalcate, lanceolate, acute, about equally long teeth; mid-lobe oblong, at the apex shortly notched, surpassing the teeth of the lateral lobes; basal callus horseshoe-shaped, legs of the callus strongly dilated towards the apex, vanishing below the middle of the blade, pit ovate-oblong, basal, almost reaching the middle of the blade; auricles triangular, subobtuse, parallel, c. 0.15 cm long. Column short, rather thick. Anther ovate-cucullate, subobtuse. Ovary cylindrical, glabrous, 6-ribbed, including the pedicel c. 0.25 cm long. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914)

Colours: Flowers greenish yellow, past anthesis becoming orange-yellow.

Habitat: Terrestrial in lower montane forest; 1200 m.

Flowering time in the wild: June.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 431-227M.JPG.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing terrestrial, requires shaded position.