Hairy Jewel Orchid
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Hairy Jewel Orchid
P Native Photo: Aditya Gadkari
Common name: Hairy Jewel Orchid
Botanical name: Hetaeria oblongifolia    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)
Synonyms: Goodyera discoidea, Hetaeria nitida, Epipactis discoidea

Hairy Jewel Orchid is a medium sized, terrestrial orchid with erect, elongated, fleshy, round, stems, carrying up to 9, obliquely oblong leaves that are 3 veined below, pointed, apiculate, narrowing below into the stalked base. The plant blooms in the winter, spring and fall on an erect, branch-end, 10-30 cm long racemose, which is laxly many flowered. The raceme is hairy with several, hairy, progressively smaller upwards bracts and adpressed, lanceshaped floral bracts carrying small, slightly opening flowers. Flowers are half opening, olive-green, almost cylindric, not twisted, 4.5-5.5 mm, densely velvet-hairy. Sepals are white, tinged light yellowish green at base, broadly ovate, outer surface densely velvet-hairy, tip blunt. Dorsal sepal is about 3.5 x 2.5 mm; lateral sepals oblique, about 4 x 2.2 mm. Petals are incurved at tip, white, narrowly rhombic-obovate, sickle shaped, about 4 x 1.3 mm, tip somewhat pointed; lip cream-colored, broadly ovate-boat-shaped, about 4 mm, 2-partite, fleshy toward tip; hypochile saccate, about 3.5 mm, containing 8-10 papillous calli. Column is about 2.2 mm, stout. Hairy Jewel Orchid is found in Western Ghats, Andaman Islands to Indo-China. Flowering: March-April.

Identification credit: Pankaj Kumar Photographed at Havelock island, Andaman.

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