West-Himalayan Eria
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West-Himalayan Eria
P Native Photo: Krishan Lal
Common name: West-Himalayan Eria
Botanical name: Pinalia occidentalis    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)
Synonyms: Eria occidentalis

West-Himalayan Eria is a clustered orchid, up to 15 cm tall. Flowers are 8-9 mm long, 4-5 mm wide, faintly fragrant, creamy-white, with light pink tip of sepals and petals, mid-lobe of lip yellow, side-lobes pinkish-purple, column white in front, pinkish-purple behind, dark-purple at the tip and anther. Flower-stalk plus ovary 4-6 mm long, creamy-yellow, sparsely star-shaped-velvet-hairy. Sepals are entire, 3-5 veined, dorsal sepal 4-5 x 1.5 - 2 mm, ovate-oblong, somewhat pointed; lateral sepals 4-5 mm long, 4.5-5 mm broad at base, broadly triangular-ovate, blunt, fused with the column- foot to form a broadly round, shallowly notched mentum. Petals are 4 -5 x 1 - 1.2 mm, elliptic-lanceshaped, entire, pointed, 3-veined. Lip is continuous with the column-foot without any separating line between them, about 4.5 mm long. ca 5 mm wide through side-lobes, fan-shaped, 3-lobed; side-lobes erect, broadly round, margins incurved; mid-lobe as long as broad, quadrate to sub-round, strongly reflexed, shortly bilobulate; disc with 3 obscure keels run from the base of column up to the mid-lobe. Column about 2.5 mm long, erect, club-shaped; foot elongated, strongly curved; anther broadly triangular, blunt, twice as long as broad, 2-lobed. Flower racemes are 1-2, arising from the developing pseudobulbs , up to 6 cm long, erect, cylindrical; flower-cluster-stalks 1.5-2 cm long, laxly 7-12-flowered. Floral bracts are 4.5-5.5 x 3-3.5 mm, creamy yellow, strongly reflexed, ovate to ovate-subulate, entire, tapering, 5-veined, sparsely velvet-hairy outside. Pseudobulbs are 3-5 cm long, 1-1.5 cm wide, narrowly conical to spindle-shaped. Leaves are 2-6, sub-apical, 6-12 x 1-2 cm, lower most leaf is smallest, lanceshaped, entire, tapering, base channelled, sheathing, 7-11- veined. Capsules are 8-10 mm long, inverted-lanceshaped, shortly stalked. West-Himalayan Eria is found on tree trunks or ground in tropical valleys and subtropical primary forests at altitude of 1200-2000 m. Flowering: July-August.

Identification credit: Pankaj Kumar Photographed in Kinnaur distt., Himachal Pradesh.

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