Tiny Tainia
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Tiny Tainia
P Native Photo: Siddarth Machado
Common name: Tiny Tainia
Botanical name: Tainia minor    Family: Orchidaceae (Orchid family)

Tiny Tainia is a small to medium sized, cold growing terrestrial orchid with a cylindric, basally expanded pseudobulb. The pseudobulb carryies a single, elliptic, long-pointed, thin, plicate, many veined leaf, which narrows into the stalked base. The plant blooms in the spring on a 7-18 cm long, 5 to 16 flowered inflorescence at branch ends, which is enveloped by 3 to 4 sheaths. Flowers have triangular, spreading floral bracts and mostly open simultaneously. Flowers are nearly erect; sepals and petals pale purplish brown with deep purple spots, lateral lobes of lip white, tinged with pale purplish brown, mid-lobe white, anther cap green; flower-stalk and ovary shorter than floral bracts. Dorsal sepal is narrowly oblong, about 15 × 2 mm, 3-veined, slightly blunt; lateral sepals narrowly sickle shaped-oblong, about 15 x 2 mm, base adnate to column foot forming a short mentum. Petals are narrowly sickle shaped-oblong, about 15 × 2.5 mm, 3-veined, pointed; lip elliptic in outline, about 1.2 cm, 3-lobed; lateral lobes erect, narrowly triangular, about 7 mm wide when flattened, pointed; mid-lobe nearly round, about 5 mm wide, tip rounded and notched. Tiny Tainia is found in the Himalayas in NE India, Myanmar, at altitudes of 1900-2100 m. Flowering: May-June.

Identification credit: Siddarth Machado Photographed in Fambong Lho Wildlife Sanctuary, Sikkim.

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