Phaius tankervilleae

Phaius tankervilleae (Banks ex L'Hér.) Blume, Mus. Bot. Lugd. Bat. 2 (1856) 177

Basionym: Limodorum tankervilleae

Large terrestrial herb. Pseudobulbs crowded, ovoid, to c. 4 by 3 cm, 3- to 5-leaved. Leaf petiolate, plicate, elliptic, 22-56 by 3.5-6.5 cm, acuminate; petiole including the sheath 11-27 cm long. Inflorescence overtopping the leaves, laxly 4- to 12-flowered; peduncle 52-68 cm long, in the basal part 0.7-1 cm diam.; rachis c. 12.5 cm long. Floral bracts to 4 cm long. Flowers large. Sepals lanceolate, 4.3-5 by 1.1-1.45 cm, acuminate, apiculate. Petals somewhat shorter than the sepals, otherwise similar. Lip spurred, 3-lobed in the apical part, clasping the column, about as long as the petals, inside shortly pubescent, with two longitudinal keels separated by a groove, the keels merging towards the apex; lateral lobes broadly rounded; mid-lobe semi-orbicular, about 1/4 the length of the lip; spur relatively short, c. 1 cm long, at the apex incurved. Column c. 2 cm long, slightly curved, dilated towards the apex, apical margin crenate. Anther broadly cordate, densley pubescent. Pollinia trianguoar-pyriform, somewhat flattened. (After Smith, 1905 & 1915)

Colours: Sepals and petals inside light brown, rarely yellow, outside greyish white. Lip greyish white, inside light brown, rarely yellow or whitish, more purple brown at the base of the mid-lobe and on the tips of the lateral lobes, usually with a large purple-brown blotch outside near the tips of the lateral lobes.

Habitat: Terrestrial in lowland and lower montane grassland, often swampy; 33 to 2867 m.

Flowering time in the wild: Flowering observed in every month of the year.

Distribution: Malesia (Peninsular Malaysia, ?Singapore, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi, Lesser Sunda Islands, Moluccas, New Guinea, Philippines), NW Himalaya, Sri Lanka to China, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Japan, Australia, Pacific.

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Indonesia); Papua New Guinea. See map: 544-112M.JPG.

Cultivation: Intermediate growing terrestrial, requires light position.