Octarrhena aristata

Octarrhena aristata P.Royen, Alp. Fl. New Guinea 2 (1979) 732, fig. 252

Type: NGF (Sayers) 21214 (holo CANB; iso BRI, L, LAE)

Epiphytic, erect, sometimes pendent in apical part, up to 25 cm high. Stems glabrous, usually unbranched, only in apical part with inflorescences and complete leaves, subterete. Leaves erect-patent, fleshy, glabrous, falcate, linear, terete and slightly laterally compressed, 0.5-1.4 by 0.12-0.15 cm, obtuse; sheaths subdensely warty, tubular, 0.3-0.6 cm long, widened and obliquely truncate at tip, many-ribbed. Inflorescences 2-4.5 cm long, many-flowered. Peduncle glabrous, 0.5-0.8 cm long, with 2 tubular, 0.2-0.4 cm long scales; rachis glabrous, flexuose, 1.5-3.5 cm long, narrowly 3-winged. Floral bracts glabrous, broadly ovate, 0.12-0.15 by 0.12-0.15 cm, contracted into an 0.18-0.22 cm long terete awn, the basal bracts sometimes auricled on either side of the awn. Sepals glabrous, connate at base only, turgid, obtuse, slightly cucullate on inside at tip, 1-nerved, nerve somewhat grooved on inside at base. Median sepal oblong-ovate, 0.7-0.8 by 0.5-0.7 mm. Lateral sepals obliquely ovate, 0.6-0.8 by 0.4-0.6 mm. Petals glabrous, obliquely ovate-rhombic, 0.3-0.4 by 0.2-0.3 mm, obtuse, 1-nerved. Lip glabrous, cordate, concave, 0.4-0.5 by 0.5 mm, obtusely acuminate, on inside with a knob-like basal appendage, 1-nerved. Column stout, 0.3-0.4 mm long, cup-like enlarged at base and finely papillate on that part only; stelidia 2, glabrous, oblong, 0.1 mm long, obtuse. Anther broadly ovoid, 0.2 by 0.4 by 0.1 mm, obtuse, connective umbonate at base. Pedicel glabrous, 0.2-0.3 mm long; ovary glabrous, broadly obovoid, 0.12-0.15 by 0.1-0.13 cm, 3-grooved. Fruit not seen. (After van Royen, 1979)

Colours: Flowers pale creamy yellow.

Habitat: Epiphyte in subalpine forest; 3050 m.

Flowering time in the wild: September.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 486-6M.JPG.

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte.