Family Orchidaceae Subfamily Epidendroideae
Epidendroideae Lindl., Coll. Bot., App. (1821). Type genus: Epidendrum L.
- Neottioideae Lindl., Coll. Bot., App. (1821). Type genus: Neottia Sw.
- Malaxidoideae Burnett, Outlines Bot. (1835) 461, as Subtypus Malaxidae. Type genus: Malaxis Solander ex Sw.
- Limodoroideae Burnett, Outlines Bot. (1835) 461, as Subtypus Limodoridae. Type genus: Limodorum Sw.
- Vandoideae Endl., Gen. Pl. (1837) 196. Type genus: Vanda R.Br.
- Arethusoidae Endl., Gen. Pl. (1837) 196, 216. Type genus: Arethusa L.
- KerosphaeroideaeGaray, Bot. Mus. Leafl., 19 (1960) 87, nom. superfl.
- Tropidoideae (Pfitzer) Szlach., Fragm. Fl. Geobot. Suppl. 3 (1995) 35. Type genus: Tropidia Lindl.
Sympodial or monopodial terrestrials, lithophytes or epiphytes, glabrous or hairy, herbaceous. Roots branched or not, usually stout, rarely slender and wiry, usually with velamen (absent in some terrestrials and all taxa without chlorophyll). Rhizome usually cylindrical, sometimes with tubular scale leaves. Stems in tufts or not, swollen as pseudobulbs or cylindrical and reed-like or compressed, rarely with woody a or branched stems, or stem a corm and underground; pseudobulbs, if present ovoid or obovoid, cylindrical fusiform, club-shaped, conical, sometimes compressed or angular. Leaves usually present. duplicate, in mycoheterotrophic taxa scale-like without chlorophyll, usually distichous, dehiscent, leathery, fleshy, or less often thin-textured, simple, articulated or not; leaf sheath present or not; petiole present or not. Inflorescence lateral or less often terminal, 1- to many-flowered, raceme, a spike, or a panicle. Median sepal free, rarely adnate to the lateral sepals. Lateral sepals free or less often connate; mentum often present. Lip simple, lobed or not, with or without a spur, without or with calli or ridges, warts, hairs, or a farinose callus, hinged or immobile on the base of the column or on the apex of the column foot, with nectar or not; spur absent or present, saccate to cylindrical or club-shaped, sometimes inside with calli or hairs. Column usually glabrous, winged or not; column foot present or not; anther incumbent, rarely erect (Tropidia), terminal on the column; pollinia 2, 4, 6, or 8, sometimes superposed, usually hard and waxy, in some genera soft and mealy either attached directly to a viscidium or by 1 or 2 tegular stipes to 1 or 2 well-developed viscidia; stigma usually a sunken pit below a ridged, 2- or 3-lobed rostellum. Fruit a capsule, dehiscent by longitudinal slits; seeds thread-like, fusiform or rarely with a winged testa.
(after Cribb 2005)