Skip to main content
This species is accepted, and its native range is SW. Ethiopia to E. Zimbabwe.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium

[FTEA]

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

Morphology General Habit
A pendulous epiphytic plant to 50 cm. or more long.
Morphology Stem
Stems (or pseudobulbs) cylindrical or narrowly fusiform, 3–20 cm. long, 3–9 mm. wide, yellow or purple, superposed, given off from the middle of the previous growth.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves spreading, somewhat undulate, elliptic, oblong or oblanceolate, 5–15 cm. long, 1.5 cm. wide, acute or subacute, nerves prominent.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence 3.5–9 cm. long, pubescent, branching or unbranched, shorter than the terminal leaves; bracts narrowly lanceolate, acuminate, 0.4–0.7 cm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers green or yellowish green, tinged with brown or mauve, lip yellow marked with purple.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Dorsal sepal ovate-lanceolate, acute or acuminate, 4.8 mm. long, 2 mm. wide; lateral sepals obliquely ovate-triangular, acuminate, 5.5 mm. long, 3 mm. wide, forming with the column-foot a mentum 2.6 mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Petals linear or lanceolate, acute, 3.8 mm. long, 1 mm. wide.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Labellum
Lip shortly clawed, 3-lobed above or at the middle, 5 mm. long, 3.8 mm. wide, ecallose or with a slight fleshy thickening between the side lobes; side lobes erect, elliptic, rounded; mid-lobe ovate or rotund, acuminate or apiculate, 2.3 mm. long, 2.2 mm. wide.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Column
Column terete, 1.2 mm. long.
Habitat
Epiphyte in montane forest; 1200–1800 m.
Distribution
K4 K5 T2 T3 U1 U2 U3

[FZ]

Orchidaceae, I. la Croix & P.J. Cribb. Flora Zambesiaca 11:2. 1998

Morphology General Habit
Pendent, epiphytic herb to c. 50 cm long.
Vegetative Multiplication Pseudobulbs
Pseudobulbs superposed, the new ones arising from about the middle of the pseudobulb produced in the previous season, often hanging in long chains; each pseudobulb 3–20 cm × 3–9 mm, fusiform, c. 4-leaved, yellow or purplish.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves 5–15 × 0.8–1.5 cm, elliptic, oblong or oblanceolate, glossy green with prominent, often purplish, veins on the underside.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence (floral axis) 3.5–9 cm long, pubescent, branched or unbranched.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers green or yellow-green with reddish veining, the lip creamy-yellow with a purple mid-line.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Pedicel and Ovary
Pedicel and ovary 5 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts
Bracts 4–7 mm long, lanceolate, acuminate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Dorsal sepal 3–4.8 × 2 mm, ovate or lanceolate, acute or acuminate; lateral sepals 5.5–6 × 3 mm, obliquely ovate-triangular, forming a rounded mentum 2.5–3 mm high.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Petals 3–3.8 × 1 mm, linear or lanceolate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Labellum
Lip 5 × 3.8 mm, shortly clawed, 3-lobed at about the middle, ecallose or with a slight thickening between the lobes; mid-lobe 2.3 × 2.2 mm, ± orbicular, acuminate or apiculate; side lobes erect, elliptic or oblong, rounded.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Column
Column 1.2 mm long.

Native to:

Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

Polystachya simplex Rendle appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Feb 22, 2011 Jansen, P.C.M. [2210], Ethiopia K000718507
Saska, L. [102], Tanzania 17051.000
Eggeling, W.J., Uganda 17884.000
17887.000
Piers, F., Kenya 20065.000
Ball, J.S. [600], Zimbabwe 21236.000
Copley, H. [66], Kenya 21237.000
Kenya 21238.000
Piers, F., Kenya 21239.000
23933.000
Eggeling, W.J. [E5367], Uganda 29112.000
Mason, L.M. [121], Ethiopia 34924.000
Cribb, P. [10849], Tanzania 35767.000
Tanner, L. [71], Tanzania 36729.000
Mason, L.M., Ethiopia 37609.000
Meyer, H. [K89], Uganda 38190.000
Protzen, G. [206] 44132.000
H.M.Customs, Ethiopia 56618.000
9172.000
Congo, DRC 9180.000
Moreau, W.M., Tanzania 9187.000
Scott Elliot, G.F. [7827], Congo, DRC K000242365

First published in J. Bot. 33: 199 (1895)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R. (2003). World Checklist of Monocotyledons Database in ACCESS: 1-71827. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Mytnik-Ejsmont, J. (2011). A monograph of the subtribe Polystachyinae Schltr. (Orchidaceae): 1-400. Fundacja Rozwoju Uniwersytetu Gdanskiego.
  • Szlachetko, D.L. & Mytnik-Ejsmont, J. (2015). Orchidaceae of West-Central Africa 2: 1-300. Koeltz Scientific books, Koenigsheim, Germany.

Literature

Kew Backbone Distributions

  • Demissew, S., Cribb, P. & Rasmussen, F. (2004). Field Guide to Ethiopian Orchids: 1-300. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Mytnik-Ejsmont, J. (2011). A monograph of the subtribe Polystachyinae Schltr. (Orchidaceae): 1-400. Fundacja Rozwoju Uniwersytetu Gdanskiego.
  • Szlachetko, D.L. & Mytnik-Ejsmont, J. (2015). Orchidaceae of West-Central Africa 2: 1-300. Koeltz Scientific books, Koenigsheim, Germany.

Flora of Tropical East Africa

  • Kraenzl. in F. Fedde, Repertorium Speciorum Novarum Regni Vegetabilis, Beih. 39: 34 (1926).
  • Piers, Orch. E. Afr., ed. 2: 134, fig. 48 (1968).
  • Rendle in Journal of Botany 33: 199 (1895).
  • Robyns & Tournay, Flore des Spermatophytes du Parc National Albert. 3: 471 (1955).
  • Rolfe in Flora of Tropical Africa 7: 117 (1897).
  • Stewart in A.D.Q. Agnew, Upland Kenya Wild Flowers p. 766, fig. (1974).
  • Summerh. in Bulletin of Miscellaneous Information, Kew 1939: 499 (1939).

Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0