Accepted name: Dendrochilum uncatum var. longispicatum (Ames) H.A.Pedersen, Opera Bot. 130: 58 (1997)

Subgenus – Platyclinis. Section – Platyclinis.




Dendrochilum longispicatum Ames, Orchidaceae 2: 105 (1908).


Origin in the Wild




Elevation in the Wild


1450-1750 metres


Habitat in the Wild


Plants have been collected from Benguet province at Baguio, Mount Pulog, Mount Santo Tomas and in Mountain Province at Bauko.


The Plants Description


The pseudobulbs cluster on a short rhizome and are shaped fusiform. The pseudobulbs measure 1.7-7.0cm long and 0.2-1.0cm in diameter. The pseudobulbs are covered by 4-6 cataphylls while they are growing. The cataphylls disintegrate into persistent as the pseudobulbs mature. The leaves are petiolate, the petiole measures 0.6-4.5cm long. The leaf blades are shaped lanceolate and abruptly narrow below their apices. The leaf blades measure 4.6-19.0cm long and 0.7-2.2cm wide. The leaves are thin textured and have five distinct nerves.


Herbarium Specimens






Specimen 18841 (photo)






Specimen 18840 (photo)





New York Botanical Garden (NY)


Specimen 39532 (photo)


Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (K)


I could not locate the specimen



Other herbarium specimens


National Herbarium Netherlands (L)


Specimen L0322804

Specimen L0322805

Specimen L0322806

Specimen L0322807




Yes, a faint scent.


Flowering Season


Flowering plants have been collected in the wild during April, July and from September to December.


The Inflorescence


The inflorescence is synanthous. The peduncle is suberect to curved and measures 6.0-20.8cm long. The rachis is pendent and measures 5.3-19.8cm long. The flowers alternate distichously and are spaced 2.0-3.0mm apart. There are two appressed non-floriferous bracts at the base of the rachis. The flowers open from the proximal or central section of the rachis.


The Flowers


Ames wrote that the flowers are greenish-yellow (Ames 1908). The flower is light green to yellow; sometimes the keels and side lobes are a reddish brown colour (Pedersen 1997). The sepals and petals spread widely. The dorsal sepal is shaped lanceolate and has an obtuse to acute apex. The dorsal sepal measures 4.1-5.2mm long and 1.3-1.7mm wide. The dorsal sepal is three veined and has an entire margin. The lateral sepals are shaped lanceolate-oblong to narrowly elliptic and have acute to acuminate apices, which are sometimes recurved. The lateral sepals measure 4.1-5.3mm long and 1.7-2.0mm wide. The lateral sepals are three veined and have entire margins. The petals are shaped elliptic and have acute to acuminate apices, sometimes finely mucronate. The petals measure 3.7-5.0mm long and 1.6-2.1mm wide. The petals are three veined and have erose margins. The labellum is easily versatile, more or less pendent and 3-lobed. The labellum measures 3.0-3.7mm long and 1.7-2.1mm wide. The labellum is three veined and has erose margins from the base to the apices of the side lobes, the mid-lobe margin is entire. The side lobes are erect, shaped obliquely subtriangular, often somewhat falcate and have acute apices. The mid-lobe is shaped broadly obcuneate and has a rounded to acuminate apex, usually apiculate. There are two small keels located on the lateral nerves and terminate just past the base of the mid-lobe. The column is suberect, somewhat incurved and measures 1.5-2.0mm long. The apical wing is prolonged into a rounded apex with an entire to crenate margin. The apical wing distinctly exceeds the anther cap. The stelidia grow upwards from the base of the column and are distinctly shorter than the column apex. The stelidia are incurved, sometimes shaped falcate and hook-like with rounded to obtuse apices, rarely subacute.




This species is in cultivation although not as nearly common as Dendrochilum uncatum var uncatum. I know of plants in cultivation in Australia.


Similar Species


Dendrochilum parvipapillatum (see this page for the differences)

Dendrochilum gracile

Dendrochilum amesianum


Other Information


Ames wrote (Ames 1908) that this species is allied to Dendrochilum gracile and Dendrochilum uncatum. Ames wrote that the differences between Dendrochilum longispicatum and Dendrochilum uncatum were the elongated pseudobulbs, graceful raceme and different leaves. Henrik Pedersen (Pedersen 1997) reduced Dendrochilum longispicatum to a synonym of Dendrochilum uncatum as the differences outlined by Ames overlapped in both species. Pedersen wrote that the only difference between the two species were the position of the stelidia on the column.


Pedersen's keys to the varieties are (Pedersen 199&):


1.       Stelidia appearing from the middle of the column, rarely sub-basal (upper margin of the stelidia connected to the column proper approximately at the level of the stigma margin). Fertile stigma linear-oblong to narrowly obtriangular in outline………………………………………………………………………………………………………var. uncatum


1.       Stelidia basal (the distance between the lower stigma margin and the upper margin of the stelidia at least as long as the stigma itself). Fertile stigma subquadrate to transversely elliptic in outline………………………………………………………var. longispicatum



Reference -


AMES, Oakes. 1908, Illustrations and studies of the Family Orchidaceae Facsimile 2, Ames Botanical Laboratory, North Easton, Massachusetts, Boston.


PEDERSEN, Henrik. 1997, The Genus Dendrochilum (Orchidaceae) in the Philippines - A Taxonomic Revision. Opera Botanica, Denmark


World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 17 January 2009. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; accessed 17 January 2009.