Liparis latialata Mansf.
  • Notizbl. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 12: 703 (1935) 

Notes: Distribution: Tanzania to Zimbabwe

General Description

Terrestrial herb to 12 cm tall.Pseudobulbs up to 9 cm long and 3 mm in diameter, with several sheathing leaves and 2–3 foliage leaves.Foliage leaves 3–6 × 2.3–5 cm, ovate, cordate, dark green, the margin sometimes undulate; petiole short, c. 1 cm long.Inflorescence subumbellate, 3–8-flowered, shorter than or equal in length to the foliage leaves.Sepals and petals plum-purple coloured; lip yellow or white, purple veined.Pedicel and ovary 9–12 mm long; bracts 3–4 mm long.Dorsal sepal 7–10 × 1–2 mm, linear-lanceolate; lateral sepals 11–15 × 5–6 mm, joined for three quarters of their length.Petals 7–10 mm long, less than 1 mm wide, ± filiform.Lip fleshy, with a small 2-lobed callus at the base, up to 11 × 12 mm, fan-shaped, emarginate with a small apiculus, the apical edge undulate and dentate.Column 2.5–3.5 mm long, curved, winged.

Terrestrial herb with erect shoots arising close together from a shallowly buried rhizome 1.5–2 mm. in diameter. Pseudobulbs green, fleshy, up to 9 cm. long and 3 mm. in diameter, with 3–4 small sheathing leaves and 2 or 3 large foliage leaves at the apex. Sheathing leaves increasing in length up the pseudobulb to 3 cm., partially or completely covering it, becoming fibrous with age; foliage leaves membranous, deep green, cordate, with entire margins sometimes crisped, up to 6 cm. long and 5 cm. wide; petioles 2–3 cm. long, widening abruptly near the base to encircle the pseudobulb; a smaller foliage leaf often subtends the terminal inflorescence. Inflorescence shorter than, or equalling, the foliage leaves, up to 5-flowered, subumbellate; bracts 2–4 mm. long, acuminate. Pedicel and ovary up to 1.5 cm. long. Tepals purple. Dorsal sepal 9 mm. long, 2 mm. wide, tapering gradually towards the acute apex, and narrowing abruptly at the base; lateral sepals joined almost to the apices, but may split further apart; united part 6 mm. wide, 7 mm. long, free apices rounded, acute. Petals linear, 8 mm. long, 1 mm. wide, rounded at the apices. Lip fleshy, with a small bilobed callus at the base, suborbicular, 2-lobed ± with an apiculum between, sides folded upwards at the base, main blade almost flat, margins entire at the base, changing abruptly to deeply toothed around the lobes. Lip white or yellow with purple veins. Column 3.5 mm. long, much curved, with 2 very wide wings extending from base to apex.


habit: herb


Riverine and swamp forest, leaf mould in marshy ground

HAB. Mist forest; 1000 m.


Zambia Ndola, mushitu of Mwekera stream, fl. 7.xii.1963, Morze 137a (K).

Zimbabwe Chimanimani, Mutzingazi, 1060 m, fl. 14.i.1956, Ball 556 (K; SRGH).

Tanzania NW. Uluguru Mts., Dec. 1932, Schlieben 3091!


in Notizbl. Bot. Gart. Berlin 12: 703 (1935). —Grosvenor in Excelsa 6: 84 (1976). —Williamson, Orch. S. Centr. Africa: 115, t. 93 (1977). —Cribb & Bowden in F.T.E.A., Orchidaceae: 296 (1984). Type from Tanzania.

in N.B.G.B. 12: 703 (1935); Williamson, Orch. SC. Afr.: 115, fig. 59/4, t. 93 (1977).

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
Found in
  • Africa East Tropical Africa Tanzania
  • South Tropical Africa Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
  • West-Central Tropical Africa Zaire


  • 1 Govaerts, R. (2003). World Checklist of Monocotyledons Database in ACCESS: 1-71827. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

 Information From

Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca. Published on the Internet;
Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa. Published on the Internet;
WCS higher taxonomy
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World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; Retrieved 2011 onwards
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