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  1. Family: Orchidaceae Juss.
    1. Genus: Disperis Sw.
      1. Disperis kilimanjarica Rendle

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Kenya to Zambia.


    Orchidaceae, V. S. Summerhayes. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1968

    Glabrous herb, 7.5–12 cm. tall, arising from an ovoid tuber, 1–1.5 cm. long, 8 mm. wide, sending out filiform tuber-bearing underground shoots.
    Leaves 2, alternate, sessile, sheathing at the base, ovate, 1.2–3.1 cm. long, 0.7–2.1 cm. wide, acute, cordate above the sheath.
    Flowers solitary, white tinged green, margined with lilac along the edge of the spur, or pinkish, or distinctly green and dull mauve; bract leaf-like, 0.8–1.5 cm. long, 4–8 mm. wide.
    Intermediate sepal hooded, joined to the petals to form a short spur 0.8- 1.6 cm. long, broad towards its mouth, abruptly narrowed towards the apex; lateral sepals obliquely ovate, 0.6–1.2 cm. long, 4–5 mm. wide, apiculate, free, bearing sacs 2–2.5 mm. long.
    Petals irregularly oblong, 8 mm. long, 4 mm. wide, curved on united margin, irregular on free margin, shortly clawed at the base.
    Lip 6 mm. long, with linear claw expanded above into a narrowly triangular blade with a reflexed tip, which bears (at the point of reflection) a thick narrowly oblong appendage directed to the apex of the spur, 3 mm. long, papillate at the extreme tip.
    Fig. 39/9, p. 220.
    In dense shade of evergreen forest mostly on branches covered with mosses and liverworts or in leaf-litter, sometimes epiphytic on trees up to 6 m. above the ground; 2100–2700 m.
    K3 K4 K6 T2 U3 not known elsewhere

    Orchidaceae, I. la Croix and P.J. Cribb. Flora Zambesiaca 11:1. 1995

    Epiphytic or terrestrial herb 5–12 cm tall; tuber 10–15 × 5–10 mm, ovoid.
    Leaves 2, alternate, 1.5–3.5 × 1.2 cm, ovate, cordate at base.
    Inflorescence single-flowered.
    Flowers white tinged with green and sometimes with mauve.
    Pedicel and Ovary
    Ovary and pedicel 10–11 mm long.
    Bracts leaf-like, 10–15 × 7 mm, ovate.
    Dorsal sepal 8–16 mm long, joined to petals to form a blunt spur. Lateral sepals 7–12 × 3–5 mm, obliquely ovate, apiculate, each with a sac-like spur 1–2 mm long.
    Petals 8 × 4 mm, oblong, the free margin irregular.
    Lip 6 mm long, curved back into spur, the linear claw expanded into a triangular blade reflexed at the tip, with an oblong appendage 3 mm long arising at the point of reflexion, papillate at tip, almost reaching apex of the spur.


    Native to:

    Burundi, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia

    Other Data

    Disperis kilimanjarica Rendle appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Tweedie, E.M. [920], Kenya 21086.000
    Copley, H. [102A], Kenya 21087.000
    Bally, P.R.O. [8398], Kenya 9429.000
    Eggeling, W.J. [6691], Tanzania 18547.000
    Williamson, G. [270], Zambia 34006.000
    Leakey, C.L.A., Kenya 29895.000
    Mabberley [13], Kenya 32500.000
    Dowsett-Lemaire, F. [352], Malawi 44314.000


    First published in J. Linn. Soc., Bot. 30: 400 (1895)

    Accepted by

    • Kurzweil, H. & Manning, J.C. (2005). A synopsis of the genus Disperis Sw. (Orchidaceae) Adansonia, III, 27: 155-207.
    • Govaerts, R. (2003). World Checklist of Monocotyledons Database in ACCESS: 1-71827. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.


    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • Tweedie in Journ. E.A. Nat. Hist. Soc. 24: 12 (1964).
    • Rolfe in Flora of Tropical Africa 7: 290 (1898).
    • Schltr. in Bull. Herb. Boiss. 6: 937(1898).
    • Rendle in Journal of the Linnean Society of London, Botany 30: 400, t. 32/8–10 (1895).


    Flora Zambesiaca
    Flora Zambesiaca

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
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    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.