Robiquetia brassii

Robiquetia brassii Ormerod, Austrobaileya 7 (2005) 199, fig. 9 & 10

Type: Brass 11716 (holo BRI; iso AMES, L), from Indonesia, Papua Prov., Balim River

Epiphytic herb. Stem elongate, leafy, at least 15-24 cm long and 0.5-0.85 cm thick but 1.3-2 cm wide across top of sheaths. Roots terete, elongate, at least 27 cm long and 0.3-0.4 cm thick. Leaves 3-7 or more, oblong to ligulate, thickly coriaceous, emarginate to obliquely truncate, lobes obtuse to truncate, from c. 6 by 2.1cm to c. 23 by 3.6 cm; sheaths obliquely truncate opposite leaf lamina, 1.5-4.4 cm long. Inflorescences 13.5-30 cm long, to 0.4 cm thick; peduncle 11-19 cm long; peduncle-scales three, scattered, tubular, clasping, acute, 0.7-1.35 cm long; rachis 2.5-11 cm long, densely 15- to many-flowered; floral bracts ovate-lanceolate, acute, 0.5-1 cm long and 0.2-0.3 cm wide. Flowers resupinate; pedicel plus ovary cylindrical to weakly clavate, laxly covered in short scales, 5.5-6 mm long; sepals and petals fleshy. Median sepal obovate-elliptic, obtuse, concave, 3-nerved, 4.5-6 by 2.5-3.5 mm, sparsely covered in short scales outside; lateral sepals broadly oblique-elliptic, obtuse, 4-6 by 2.8-4 mm, sparsely covered in short scales outside. Petals obovate-elliptic, obtuse, 1-2-nerved, 4-5.5 by 3-4 mm. Lip 3-lobed, spurred, connate to ventral sides of the column for c. 1 mm, 4-5 by 5-6.5 mm; hypochile with broadly rounded lateral lobes 2-3.5 mm long and 2-2.5 mm wide, each inside at front with a fleshy callosity c. 1 mm long, between lateral lobes a low short median keel terminating at the epichile base; epichile fleshy, ovate, subacute, 1.5-2 mm long; spur conical-cylindrical, acute to obtuse, straight to gently geniculate, 5-10 mm long. Column short, stout, hamate, c. 2 mm long and 1.5-2.5 mm wide laterally. (After Ormerod 2005)

Colours: Sepals and petals red to dirty purple.

Habitat: Epiphyte in riverine forest; 1200 to 1600 m.

Flowering time in the wild: May, December.

Distribution: Malesia (New Guinea).

Distribution in New Guinea: Papua (Indonesia). See map: 617-55M.JPG.

Note: Differs from the similar Robiquetia hamata and Robiquetia camptocentrum in the solid, fleshy, entire lip epichile.