Delicate Moth Orchid
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Delicate Moth Orchid
P Native Photo: Jambey Tsering
Common name: Delicate Moth Orchid
Botanical name: Phalaenopsis deliciosa    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)
Synonyms: Doritis deliciosa, Kingidium deliciosum

Delicate Moth Orchid is a miniature sized, tree-dwelling orchid with a very short stem carrying, 3-6 oblong-lanceshaped, wavy margins, apically slightly unequal leaves. The plant blooms at any time on an in leaf-axils, erect, raceme, up to 20 cm long, often branching, many flowered, with the sequentially opening flowers facing in all directions. Flowers are produced continuously and sequentially over long periods, whitish with pale purple stripes or markings. Flower-stalk and ovary are yellowish green, 0.4-0.5 cm. Dorsal sepal is almost elliptic, 6-7 x 3-3.5 mm, blunt; lateral sepals obliquely ovate, 5.5-6 x 3.5-4 mm, base adnate to column foot, tip blunt. Petals are nearly obovate, 5-5.5 x 2.7-3 mm, blunt. Lip is not clawed at base, 3-lobed; lateral lobes erect, obliquely elliptic-obovate, about 4 x 2.5 mm, rounded, with toothlike flaps, base decurrent and forming a broadly conic spur with base of mid-lobe, above with a high lamella; mid-lobe spreading horizontally, obovate-wedge-shaped, about 6 x 5 mm, tip deeply notched, with a thickened central longitudinal ridge, base with a flattened appendage; appendage Y-shaped, tip deeply furcate-bilobed. Delicate Moth Orchid is found in the Himalayas to China, SE Asia and the Western Ghats, at altitudes of 300-1600 m. Flowering: July.

Identification credit: Jambey Tsering Photographed in Tippi, West Kameng, Arunachal Pradesh.

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