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Genus Disperis

Genus Disperis

Disperis Sw., Kongl. Vetensk. Acad. Handl. 21 (1800) 218

Synonyms:

  • Genus Dipera Spreng., Syst. Veg. 3 (1826) 696
  • Genus Dryopeia Thouars, Hist. Orchid. (1822) t. 1-3
  • Genus Dryorkis Thouars, Nouv. Bull. Sci. Soc. Philom. Paris 19 (1809) 316

Small terrestrial plants with subterranean tubers. Stem one- or two-leaved. Leaves not sheathing at the base, almost opposite, glabrous, persistent, convolute, herbaceous. Inflorescence terminal, a few-flowered raceme or carrying a single flower. Flowers small, resupinate. Sepals free, the lateral sepals spurred. Petals free, quite different from the sepals. Lip without spur, the basal part adnate to the column. Column-foot absent. Pollinia 2, sectile, caudicles present, stipe absent, viscidium present.

Species present in New Guinea:

Disperis rhodoneura


Tropical and Southern Africa, Madagascar, Mascarenes, Sri Lanka, tropical continental Asia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Caroline Islands. About 75 species; in New Guinea one, endemic, species [Disperis rhodoneura Schltr.].

Terrestrial in montane forest.

  • Subfamily Orchidoideae
  • Tribe Orchideae
  • Subtribe Brownleeinae
  • Genus Disperis

A highly characteristic genus of very delicate terrestrial plants, unique because of the spurred lateral sepals and the highly complex structure formed by the lip and the column. The Asian species of Disperis appear to be quite rare in nature, and are as yet unknown in cultivation. In spite of its name Disperis papuana Michol. & Kraenzl. was not collected in New Guinea but in the Lesser Sunda Islands and is therefore not described here.


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Genus Disperis

Disperis neilgherrensis Wight, flowers, photo P. Bruggeman made in South India (Kerala), this species is very similar to Disperis rhodoneura Schltr from New Guinea

Genus Disperis

Disperis neilgherrensis Wight, habit in situ, photo P. Bruggeman made in South India (Kerala), this species is very similar to Disperis rhodoneura Schltr from New Guinea

Genus Disperis

Disperis javanica J.J.Sm., drawing J. J. Smith in Bull. Jard. Bot. Buitenzorg, s‚r. 3, 5 (1922) t. 21, from Java (this species is not found in New Guinea but is included to illustrate the genus)