Malaxis oligantha

Malaxis oligantha (Schltr.) P.F.Hunt, Kew Bull. 24 (1970) 82

Basionym: Microstylis oligantha

Terrestrial, erect, very small, 3.5-13 cm high. Rhizome very short; roots filiform, elongated, flexuose, puberulous. Stem terete, glabrous, short, 3-5-leaved. Leaves erect-patent, obliquely lanceolate or occasionally ovate-lanceolate, acuminate, at the base cuneate, gradually narrowed into a short petiole, glabrous, including the petiole 2.5-5.5 cm long, below the middle 0.5-1.3 cm wide. Inflorescence erect, usually straight, slender, thinly terete, glabrous, surpassing the leaves; rachis laxly 3-8-flowered, secund, up to 5.5 cm long. Floral bracts pendent or deflexed, lanceolate, acute, shorter than the ovary and pedicel. Flowers erect-patent, glabrous. Sepals ovate, obtuse. Median sepal 0.3 cm long. Lateral sepals oblique, a little shorter. Petals narrowly linear-ligulate, subobtuse, about as long as the median sepal. Lip in outline semiorbicular, almost 0.25 cm long, at the base 0.3 cm wide, at the base sagittate-auriculate, at the apex subapiculate, in the centre with a pit that is dilated towards the base; auricles falcate-lanceolate, acute, 0.1 cm long, slightly incurved. Column rather thick, short. Anther reniform, obtuse. Ovary and pedicel glabrous, cylindrical, slightly 6-ribbed, 0.4 cm long. (After Schlechter, 1911-1914)

Colours: Flowers pale green.

Habitat: Terrestrial in lower montane forest; 1000 m.

Flowering time in the wild: July.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 431-299M.JPG.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing terrestrial, requires shaded position.