Native to Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia
Edited 21 June 2007
Text © Nina Rach
This species was originally described by Eduard Friedrich Poeppig [1798-1868] and Stephan Friedrich Ladislaus Endlicher [Austrian?; 1804-1849]. It was first published in 1836.
Photo at left by Erica Moron de Abad, Peru.
Garay (1978) describes this species:
"Terrestrial, erect plants, up to 75 cm tall. Stems caespitose, erect, rather densely leafy, especially above, completely enclosed by setaceous, strigose leaf sheaths. Leaves suberect-spreading, rather coriaceous, ovate lanceolate to elliptic-lanceolate, long-acuminate, rather prominently ribbed, subrotund at base, up to 16 cm long and 5.5 cm wide.
"Inflorescence terminal, compsed of ovate-lanceolate, tightly imbricate, setose bracts, 1-flowered. Flowers produced in succession, rather showy, white with yellow center.
"Sepals similar, oblanceolate-ligulate, acute, basally connate up to a 1.5 cm long tube, up to 8 cm long amd 1.7 cm wide; lateral sepals oblique.
"Petals from a cuneate base obovate to elliptic, rounded at apex, shortly and abruptly apiculate in center with undulate margins, up to 7 cm long and 3 cm wide.
"Lip from a cuneate base obovate, bilobed in front with crenulate, wavy margins; disc with 7, more or less parallel, somewhat undulate, low keels, at base with a pair of obliquely inserted, fleshy keels; whole lip up to 6.7 cm long and 4 cm wide. Column slender, alate, with oblong-falcate auricles which are as long as the cucullate clinandrium. Ovary cylindric, up to 4 cm long."
A synonym is Sobralia buchtienii Schlechter 1929, based on a specimen (number 7211; now at AMES Herb. at Harvard) collected by Buchtien in Bolivia, on the road towards Tipuani.
Calaway H. Dodson (1988) "A list of the orchid species reported for Ecuador" in: Orquídeas de la costa del Ecuador, pp. 115-129. [55 Elleanthus sp.; 3 Palmorchis sp.; 28 Sobralia sp.; 2 Xerorchis sp.]
Leslie A. Garay (Dec. 1978) Flora of Ecuador: Orchidaceae, in: Opera Botanica, Stockholm: NFR, 305p. [50 Elleanthus sp., pp. 57-110; 24 Sobralia sp. on pp. 110-134].
Peter Møller Jørgensen & Susana León-Yánez (eds.) (1999) Catalogue of the Vascular Plants of Ecuador in: Monographs in Systematic Botany from the Missouri Botanical Garden, 75: i--viii, 1--1182. [39 Sobralia sp., pp.757-759].
Eduard Friedrich Poeppig & Stephan Friedrich Ladislaus Endlicher (1836) in: Nov. Gen. ac Sp. Pl. 1:54. Originally described from Peru, Dept. Huanuco, Cuchero, on rocks called Cassapillo. Poeppig's specimen number 1665 is in the W. herbarium.
Rudolf Schlechter (1929), in: Fedde, Rep. 27:30 [as Sobralia buchtienii, named for collector Buchtien].
Charles Schweinfurth (April 9, 1958) Orchidaceae, Orchids of Peru, in: Fieldiana, Botany, 30(1): 68-77. [14 Sobralia sp.].
ING: Index Nominum Genericorum,
URL: http://ravenel.si.edu/botany/ing/ingForm.cfm from the U.S. National Herbarium, Dept. of Systematic Biology - Botany, Smithsonian Institution
International Plant Names Index [IPNI]