Malay Red-Lip Orchid
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Malay Red-Lip Orchid
P Native Photo: Jambey Tsering
Common name: Malay Red-Lip Orchid
Botanical name: Erythrodes blumei    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)
Synonyms: Microchilus blumei, Physurus blumei, Erythrodes brevicalcar

Malay Red-Lip Orchid is a medium sized, terrestrial orchid with an erect stem carrying 4, basal, obliquely oblong-ovate, abruptly narrowing below into the 1.8 cm long stalked base leaves. The plant blooms in the late winter and spring on an erect, at branch-end, flower-cluster-stalk 12-40 cm long, provided with 3 to 6 sterile bracts, glandular velvet-hairy, brown, long, racemose, densely many flowered inflorescence with reddish brown, lanceshaped, below velvet-hairy, tapering floral bracts. Flowers are small; sepals velvet-hairy outside, reddish brown or brownish green outside, white with pinkish markings inside; ovary reddish brown, twisted, round, velvet-hairy, including flower-stalk 9-10 mm. Dorsal sepal is erect, concave, narrowly elliptic, 4-6 x 1.5-2.5 mm, lateral sepals spreading, obliquely elliptic or ovate-elliptic, 5.5-6 x about 3 mm, tip pointed or slightly blunt. Petals similar in color to sepals, inverted-lanceshaped, 4-6 x 1.5-2 mm, midvein transparent, tip blunt. Lip is reddish brown above, 4-5.5 mm, 3-lobed at tip; lateral lobes erect, small; mid-lobe reflexed, white, broadly ovate to triangular-ovate; spur drooping, reddish brown, tubular, 1.5-4 mm, hairless, tip shallowly 2-lobed. Malay Red-Lip Orchid is found in NE India, Indonesia, Malaysia, N Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, China, at altitudes of 400-1500 m. Flowering: April-May.

Identification credit: Jambey Tsering Photographed in Sessa, West Kameng, Arunachal Pradesh.

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