Octarrhena purpureiocellata

Octarrhena purpureiocellata P.Royen, Alp. Fl. New Guinea 2 (1979) 734, fig. 253

Type: Balgooy, van 393 (holo L; iso BISH)

Epiphytic, pendulous, up to 60 cm long. Stems glabrous, only in the upper parts with leaves and inflorescences, subterete. Leaves glabrous, erect-patent, coriaceous, oblong-elliptic, ensiform, sometimes falcate, 0.6-1.8 by 0.15-0.3 cm, laterally compressed, at the very tip dorsoventrally flattened and obtuse, 3-4-nerved, margins thin, finely irregularly wavy-crenulate mainly in apical part; sheaths tubular, 0.6-1.2 cm long, compressed, widened and obliquely truncate at tip, 2-ribbed. Inflorescences glabrous, 4-10 cm long, 8-12-flowered. Peduncle slender, 1.5-3.5 cm long, with 1 or 2 oblong-ovate, 0.25-0.35 cm long scales along its length; rachis strongly flexuose, 2.5-6.5 cm long, narrowly 2-winged, in addition 2-ribbed by the decurrent bases of the bracts. Floral bracts ovate, boat-shaped, 0.3-0.5 cm long, acute, base auricled-clasping the rachis, crested on outside, ciliolate or glabrous along the margin. Sepals ovate or ovate-elliptic, 0.6-0.7 by 0.35-0.45 cm, indistinctly obtusely acuminate, 1-nerved, crested on outside with the crest wider and slightly surpassing at the tip, connate at very base only, with ciliolate margins. Petals finely papillate on outside except in basal part, papillate on entire inside but papillae on both sides caducous, narrowly ovate-oblong, 0.5 by 0.1 cm, subacute, 1-nerved, with ciliolate margins. Lip similar to the petals but hooked at the tip and slightly cucullate, ciliolate along the margins only, otherwise glabrous. Column finely papillate-ciliate, shield-like widened from a short conoid base, 0.4 by 0.2 by 0.1 cm; stelidia 2, oblong or ovate-linear, 0.1-0.15 cm long, rounded to subacute, crested on inside, ciliolate. Anther broadly reniform, 0.6 by 1 by 0.5 mm. Pollinia 8, unequal, pyriform, 0.2-0.5 mm long. Pedicel 0.1-0.25 cm long, 3-winged; ovary glabrous, narrowly obconoid, 0.3-0.5 by 0.75 cm, 3-winged. Fruit yellow, obovoid-trigonous, 0.7 by 0.35 cm, with the dried remnants of the flower at the tip, 3-ribbed, glabrous. (After van Royen, 1979)

Colours: Flowers light orange or pale orange-brown, when older turning greenish yellow, lip with a purplish centre. Pollinia yellowish.

Habitat: Epiphyte in subalpine forest; 3040 to 3500 m.

Flowering time in the wild: May, June, July, August.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea, endemic).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua New Guinea. See map: 486-45M.JPG.

Cultivation: Cool growing epiphyte.