Meadow Eulophia
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Meadow Eulophia
P Native Unknown Photo: Sushant More
Common name: Meadow Eulophia • Marathi: सतावरी Satavari
Botanical name: Eulophia pratensis    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)
Synonyms: Eulophia ramentacea Wight [Illegitimate], Graphorchis pratensis

Meadow Eulophia is a terrestrial orchid, typically found in sugarcane fields. Flowering stem appears before the leaves, 35-50 cm high with a few sheathing scales, slightly swollen at their attachment to the stem; quite hairless, green or purplish. Leaves are long-stalked, 25-30 cm long. Flowers are borne in racemes up to 15 cm long; bracts lanceshaped, pointed, 1 cm long: ovary plus stalk ¾ inch. Sepals are elliptic, oblong, yellowish outside, purple inside, five-nerved; lateral sepals attached by their bases to the shortly projecting base of the column, on to which also run the front edges of the two petals. Petals are obovate-oblong, yellow, nearly as long as the sepals. Side lobes of lips embracing the column, each as wide as the middle lobe: middle lobe with three or four crested ridges running towards the opening of the short, triangular, backward pointing spur. Column is deeply grooved, with the sides meeting across the middle at the top; rostellum sloping downwards. Capsule 3 cm long, elliptic, turgid. Meadow Eulophia is found in Peninsular India. Flowering: March-April.

Identification credit: Sushant More Photographed at Satara, Maharashtra.

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