Accepted name: Dendrochilum stachyodes (Ridl.) J.J.Sm., Recueil Trav. Bot. Néerl. 1: 77 (1904).

Subgenus – Platyclinis. Section – Eurybrachium.




Platyclinis stachyodes Ridl., Trans. Linn. Soc. London, Bot. 4: 234 (1894).

Acoridium stachyodes (Ridl.) Rolfe, Orchid Rev. 12: 220 (1904).


Origin in the Wild




Elevation in the Wild


3200-3700 metres


Habitat in the Wild


Haviland recorded this species as abundant; Haviland found it growing in cracks of granite on the granite core of Mount Kinabalu. Jeffrey Wood wrote that this plant can be either lithophytic or terrestrial (Wood 2001). This species is often seen along Mount Kinabalu's summit trail.


Jeffrey Wood wrote that this species is almost exclusively found growing in damp fissures amongst granite rocks. Jeffrey wrote "This elegant species forms extensive colonies along rock crevices, usually in the open but sometimes under Leptospermum recurvum and is obviously able to withstand adverse climatic conditions. The mass flowering of Dendrochilum stachyodes, which peaks in December and January, is one of the delights of bleak granite slopes of the summit area of Mount Kinabalu where it is endemic" (Wood 2001).


The Plants Description


The pseudobulbs cluster on a branching rhizome that can measure up to 6cm long. The pseudobulbs are coloured pale pinkish or brownish to orange salmon and are shaped cylindrical to conical or fusiform. The pseudobulbs measure 1.2-5cm long and 0.3-0.8cm in diameter. The pseudobulbs are covered by three cataphylls while they are growing. The cataphylls disintegrate into persistent fibres as the pseudobulbs mature. The leaves are petiolate; the petiole measures 0.8-2.5cm long. The leaf blades are shaped linear-ligulate to narrowly elliptic and have acute or shortly apiculate apices. The leaf blades measure 6-12cm long and 0.4-0.9cm wide. The leaves have 4-5 distinct nerves.


The Inflorescence


The peduncle is curved and measures 5-10cm long. The rachis is curved and measures 2.5-6cm long. The rachis is quadrangular in cross-section. The flowers alternate distichously and are spaced 2-3mm apart. There is one non-floriferous bract at the base of the rachis. The inflorescence and bracts are salmon-pink.


The Flowers


The flowers are a creamy-white colour and the column is salmon-pink. The dorsal sepal is shaped linear-ligulate and has an acute apex. The dorsal sepal measures 6.0mm long and 1.5-1.6mm wide. The dorsal sepal has an entire margin and is three veined. The lateral sepals are shaped linear-ligulate or narrowly-oblong and have acute apices. The lateral sepals measure 6.0-6.1mm long and 1.5-1.6mm wide. The lateral sepals have entire margins and are three veined. The petals are shaped narrowly elliptic and have acute apices. The petals measure 5.9-6.0mm long and 1.9-2.0mm wide. The petals have slightly erose margins and are three veined. The labellum is obscurely 3-lobed or entire. The labellum, if entire, is shaped elliptic and has an acute apex. The margins are recurved near the base and erose or dentate. The labellum measures 5.0mm long and 2.9-3.0mm wide. The side lobes if present are erect, rounded and shaped subovate. There is a raised semi circular shaped, its outer nerves are elevated; the callus extends to the junction of the side lobes and mid-lobe. The column is shaped oblong and measures 1-1.1mm long. The apical hood is truncate to obscurely 3-lobed and has an entire margin. The column can be with or without stelidia. The stelidia, if present, grow from just below the middle of the column and are shaped triangular with obtuse apices. The stelidia measure c0.8mm long and do not exceed the column apex. Stelidia are rarely found on this species.


Herbarium Specimens









Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (K)


Specimen K000078240 (photo)







Other herbarium specimens


Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (K)


Specimen 25694.060

Specimen 49445.000

Specimen K000078241 (photo)

Specimen K000078239

Specimen 61481.000

Specimen 61410.000


Sabah Parks Herbarium




I could not locate this specimen










National Herbarium Netherlands (L)


Specimen L0322740

Specimen L0322741

Specimen L0322742

Specimen L0322743

Specimen L0322744

Specimen L0322746

Specimen L0322747 

Specimen L0322748

Specimen L0322749








Jeffrey Wood wrote that the flowers are reported to have a faint scent that smells sweet and spicy.


Flowering Season


Flowering plants have been in the wild during every month except for April.




I do not think this species is in cultivation


Similar Species




Other Information


Jeffrey Wood wrote "Dendrochilum stachyodes, together with Bulbophyllum coriaceum, Coelogyne papillosa and Eria grandis attains a greater altitude than any other Bornean orchids." (Wood 1997).


Wood wrote that the El Nino effect of the last 25 years has had an impact on this species due to the droughts that have resulted from it (Wood 1997).


The epithet refers to the inflorescence; Ridley wrote that they reminded him of an ear of wheat.


Reference -


AMES, Oakes. 1920, Illustrations and studies of the Family Orchidaceae Facsimile 6 The Orchids of Mount Kinabalu British North Borneo, Ames Botanical Laboratory, North Easton, Massachusetts, Boston.


WOOD, Jeffrey. 1997, Orchids of Borneo volume 3. The Sabah Society, Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia.


WOOD, Jeffrey. Dendrochilum of Borneo, 2001. Natural History Publications (Borneo), Malaysia.


World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 19 March 2009. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; accessed 19 March 2009.