Mediocalcar congestum

Mediocalcar congestum Schuit., Orchid Monogr. 8 (1997) 49, fig. 12

Type: Reeve 5049 (holo L; iso K, LAE, NSW)

Roots densely covered with root hairs, 1 mm thick. Rhizome abbreviated, more or less frequently branching, 2-3 mm thick. Cataphylls of the young shoot 5-6, closely appressed, acute, glabrous, keeled near the tip. Pseudobulbs erect to suberect, approximate, narrowly conical to cylindrical, (1-) 2-4 cm long, 5 mm across at the base; base not elongated. Leaves one per pseudobulb, sessile, narrowly lanceolate (index 5.5-19), 3.5-12 (-15) cm by (5-) 8-15 mm; glabrous; margins entire; apex rounded, obscurely bilobed, mucronate, with the mucro as long as the lobules; coriaceous. Inflorescences solitary, synanthous and apparently also heteranthous or proteranthous; basal bract lanceolate, acuminate, 5-9 mm long. Peduncle 10-25 mm long, at the apex with a triangular bract 1.3 mm long. Pedicel and ovary 10-12 mm long. Flowers urceolate or vase-shaped, not or slightly oblique, 9-10.5 mm long. Synsepalum 9-10 mm long and 15 mm wide when cut open and flattened; free tips only slightly spreading, 4 mm long, subacute. Petals linear to lanceolate (index 4-8), 8 by 1-2 mm; apex acuminate; 3-nerved. Lip 7.5-8 by 3.5 mm in natural position, the blade broadly ovate when flattened; claw 3-3.3 by 2.7 mm, auricles rather inconspicuous to well developed, reflexed; apex acuminate, porrect; margins erect, clasping the column; spur short-saccate, 1.3 mm deep. Column 5.5 mm long, 2.2 mm wide at the apex, foot 0.7 mm long. Fruit not seen. (After Schuiteman, 1997)

Colours: Flowers orange or orange-red with green or yellowish tips.

Habitat: Epiphyte in upper montane forest; 2150-2850 m.

Flowering time in the wild: March, June, September.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 436-61M.JPG.

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte, requires shaded position.

Notes: A species with tufted, erect pseudobulbs, which apears to be uncommon in the wild.