Accepted name: Dendrochilum convallariaeforme Schauer, Nov. Actorum Acad. Caes. Leop.-Carol. Nat. Cur. 19(Suppl. 1): 429 (1843).

Subgenus – Platyclinis. Section – Eurybrachium.




Acoridium convallariaeforme (Schauer) Rolfe, Orchid Rev. 12: 220 (1904).

Platyclinis bistorta H.Wendl. & Kraenzl. in H.G.Reichenbach, Xenia Orchid. 1: 169 (1856).

Acoridium bistortum (H.Wendl. & Kraenzl.) Rolfe, Orchid Rev. 12: 219 (1904).

Dendrochilum bistortum (H.Wendl. & Kraenzl.) J.J.Sm., Recueil Trav. Bot. Néerl. 1: 64 (1904).

Dendrochilum bicallosum Ames, Orchidaceae 2: 117 (1908).


Origin in the Wild


Luzon, Mindoro, Visayas and Mindanao


Elevation in the Wild


300-1915 metres


Habitat in the Wild


On Mindanao this species has been collected in Bukidnon Province from the Katanglad Mountains and in Davao del Sur Province along the Miran River on Mount Apo.


This species has been collected on Masbate, its exact locality there is unknown. On Mindoro this species has been collected from Puerto Galera and on Mount Halcon in mossy ridge forest.


On Luzon this species has been collected in Quezon Province at Lucban. In Rizal Province species have been collected on Montalban; within Camarines Sur on Mount Iriga, Mount Madooy and Mount Potianay; in Laguna Province on Mount Maquiling and within the Sierra Madre Mountain Range; within Sorsogon on the Bulusan Volcano.


This species can be found at lower elevations. A specimen was recorded as growing on a Quercus ssp. Ames described a plant from Mount Maquiling that grew in ridge forest at 550 metres (Ames 1909). Jim Cootes wrote that this plant grows as an epiphyte, often in shaded areas (Cootes 2001).


The Plants Description


The pseudobulbs cluster on a short to slightly elongate rhizome. The pseudobulbs are shaped fusiform to somewhat obpyriform. The pseudobulbs measure 1.9-4.5cm long and 0.3-0.8cm in diameter. The pseudobulbs are covered by 3-4 cataphylls while they are growing. The cataphylls soon disintegrate into persistent fibres as the pseudobulbs mature. The leaves are petiolate; the petiole measures 2.6-9.9cm long. The leaf blades are shaped oblanceolate and have acuminate to obtuse apices. The leaf blades measure 5.8-22.5cm long and 1.8-4.9cm wide. The leaves are thin textured and have 5-9 distinct nerves.


The Inflorescence


The inflorescence is synanthous and appears with the new leaf. The peduncle is erect to curved and measures 5.3-24cm long. The rachis is pendent and measures 6.5-15.1cm long. The flowers alternate distichously and are spaced 1.5-3.0mm apart; the rachis twists to form a cylindrical spiral. There is one appressed non-floriferous bract at the base of the rachis. The flowers open from the proximal section of the rachis.


The Flowers


Henrik Pedersen wrote that the flower colour varies from whitish and dull shades of brown, yellow, green and salmon pink (Pedersen 1997). Up to 50 flowers can grow on an inflorescence (Cootes 2001). The sepals and petals spread widely and rarely have a few ocelli around their margins. The dorsal sepal is shaped oblong to lanceolate and has an obtuse to acute apex. The dorsal sepal measures 4.1-5.5mm long and 1.4-2.3mm wide. The dorsal sepal is three veined and has entire margins. The lateral sepals are shaped slightly oblique, oblong and have obtuse to acute apices. The lateral sepals measure 4.1-5.8mm long and 1.5-2.4mm wide. The lateral sepals are three veined and have entire margins. The petals are shaped lanceolate to narrowly obovate and have obtuse to subacuminate apices. The petals measure 3.6-5.0mm long and 1.4-2.1mm wide. The petals are three veined and have entire margins. The labellum is pendent and entire. The labellum is shaped oblanceolate to elliptic and has a subacuminate apex. The labellum measures 3.2-4.5mm long and 1.6-3.5mm wide. The labellum is three veined and has entire margins. There can be a few scattered ocelli found around the margin of the labellum. The column is suberect or straight and measures 1.7-2.4mm long. The apical hood is prolonged into a rounded apex with an irregular to finely erose margin. The stelidia grow outwards from the top of the column and are almost equal to the apical hood. The stelidia are shaped linear-triangular, often slightly falcate with acute apices.


Herbarium Specimens






Specimen 18867 (photo) (Dendrochilum bicallosum)


Other herbarium specimens


Kew Botanical Gardens (K)


Specimen 49393.000 (Dendrochilum bicallosum)

Specimen 38594.000 (Dendrochilum bicallosum)

Specimen 71102.000 (Dendrochilum bicallosum)

Specimen 74905.000

Specimen 72192.000

Specimen K000079142


National Herbarium Netherlands, Leiden (L)


Specimen L0269518

Specimen L0269519

Specimen L0269520

Specimen L0269521

Specimen L0269522

Specimen L0269523

Specimen L0269524






Flowering Season


Flowering plants have been collected in the wild during May and from October to December. Plants in cultivation in the northern hemisphere can flower at any time of the year. Plants flower during the winter in Australia (Cootes et al).




This species is common in cultivation worldwide. It can be grown slightly warmer than many other species.


This species still seems to be commonly known in the United States by its synonym Dendrochilum bicallosum.


Similar Species


Dendrochilum copelandii

Dendrochilum ecallosum (see this page for differences)

Dendrochilum propinquum (see this page for differences)

Dendrochilum convallariaeforme var minor (see this page for differences)


Other Information


Ames wrote (1909) that he found several of the leaves of Luzon originating specimens to be longer and broader than those from Mindoro. Ames presumed the more luxuriant growth on the Luzon specimens was due to more favourable conditions for the plants.


Ames described Dendrochilum bicallosum in 1908; Ames compared this species to Dendrochilum mearnsii and Dendrochilum copelandii. Ames wrote that D. bicallosum was larger in all its flower parts and differed from the other two species by the calli and in outline (Ames 1909). Henrik Pedersen grouped this species with Dendrochilum propinquum and Dendrochilum ecallosum and that it differs from the D. graciliscapum group by not having the transverse callus at the base of the labellum (Pedersen 1997).


Henrik Pedersen reduced Dendrochilum bicallosum as a synonym because Ames description was a re-description of Dendrochilum convallariaeforme and Dendrochilum bistortum. Ames was not able to procure herbarium material of the two just mentioned.


Pedersen wrote (1997) that the drawing of Dendrochilum convallariaeforme published by Pfitzer and Kranzlin is probably Dendrochilum cornutum or a species from that group.


The epithet refers to a likeness to Lily of the Valley (Convallaria spp). The synonym Dendrochilum bicallosum was named on account of the two calli on the labellum (Cootes et al 1995).


David Banks and Jim Cootes wrote that this species had been raised by seed in Australia (Cootes et al 1995).


Reference -


AMES, Oakes. 1907, Orchidaceae Halconenses: An Enumeration of the Orchids Collected on and Near Mount Halcon, Mindoro, Chiefly By E.D. Merrill, Bureau of Printing, Manila.


AMES, Oakes. 1909, Notes on the Philippine Orchids with Descriptions of New Species, Philippine Journal of Science, Manila, Philippines.


COOTES, Jim. The Orchids of the Philippines, 2001. Timber Press, USA


COOTES, Jim. BANKS, David. 1995, The genus Dendrochilum A guide to the species in cultivation, Orchids Australia, AOC


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


World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. 08 January 2009. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; accessed 08 January 2009.