Liparis rungweensis Schltr.
  • Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 53: 562 (1915) 

Notes: Distribution: S. Tanzania to E. Zambia

General Description

Terrestrial herb, with subterranean pseudobulb 1 cm. long and 0.8 cm. wide. Leaves 2, arising at ground-level, slightly coriaceous, ovate, acute at the apex, sheathing the stem at the base, up to 3.5 cm. (usually 2.5 cm.) long and 2.5 cm. (usually 1.5 cm.) wide. Inflorescence erect, up to 6.5 cm. (usually 4–5 cm.) long, subtended by a foliaceous sheath, with ± 10 flowers. Bracts up to 7 mm. long, acuminate, surrounding the ovary at the base and equalling it in length. Flowers green. Dorsal sepal 7 mm. long, 2 mm. wide at base, auricled, tapering to an acute apex, margins revolute; lateral sepals 4 mm. long, 2 mm. wide, falcate, curving under the lip, apex rounded to acute. Petals linear, 7 mm. long, 1 mm. wide at base, gradually tapering to apex, downwardly-directed, margins revolute. Lip geniculate, entire, 6 mm. long, 4 mm. wide at centre, sides raised at the base surrounding a fleshy bilobed callus, apical half tapering to an acute tip which is turned under, giving the lip the appearance of being bilobed. Column 5 mm. long, 1.5 mm. wide at base, tapering to 0.75 mm. at apex, fleshy, abruptly curved forward at the apex.

Very small terrestrial herb; pseudobulbs subterranean, c. 10 × 8 mm.Leaves 2, erect, arising at ground level, 25–35 × 15–25 mm, ovate to oblong-ligulate, coriaceous.Inflorescence erect, 4–6.5 cm long, c. 10-flowered.Flowers green.Ovary and pedicel 5–7 mm long; bracts of similar length.Dorsal sepal 7 × 2 mm, lanceolate, acute, auricled at the base, the margin rolled back; lateral sepals 4 × 2 mm, falcate curving forwards under the lip.Petals 7 × 1 mm, linear, deflexed, margins revolute.Lip entire, 6 × 4 mm, geniculate, with a fleshy 2-lobed callus at the base; epichile tapering to an acute apex which is reflexed, so that lip appears 2-lobed.Column 5 mm long, curved.


habit: herb


Submontane grassland, in tall grass and scrub

HAB. Upland grassland and bushland, usually in rocky places; 1600–3000 m.


Tanzania Rungwe Mt., S. slope, Feb. 1961, Richards 14305!

Tanzania Mbeya Peak, Feb. 1976, Cribb & Grey-Wilson 10813! & Mar. 1970, Wingfield 930!

Zambia Nyika Plateau, near Zambian Rest-house, 2100 m, fl. 11.iii.1982, Dowsett-Lemaire 360 (K).


in E.J. 53: 562 (1915).

in Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 53: 562 (1915). —Cribb & Bowden in F.T.E.A., Orchidaceae: 297 (1984). —la Croix et al., Orch. Malawi: 179 (1991). Type from Tanzania.

Distribution Map

  • Native distribution
Found in
  • Africa East Tropical Africa Tanzania
  • South Tropical Africa Zambia


  • 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 of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa. Published on the Internet;
Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca. 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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