Bonatea cassidea Sond. 1846 Photo courtesy of Olaf Pronk and Laurette E.U.R.L. orchids of Madagascar

Plants in situ in Zimbabwe Photo courtesy of Bart Wursten and his Flora Of Zimbabwe WebSite

Part shade Cool TO CoolLATEWinterSpring

Common Name The Helmut-Shaped Bonatea

Flower Size

Found in Zimbabwe, Swaziland and Transvaal, Natal and Cape Province South Africa in shade amongst boulders at elevations of 1200 to 1500 meters as a slender, small to medium sized, cool to cold growing terrestrial with an erect, leafy stem carrying 10 to 12, linear-lanceolate, acute, slightly falcate leaves that are partially withered at blooming which occurs in the late winter and spring on an erect, 2 to 8" [5 to 20 cm] long, several to many flowered inflorescence with ovate, acuminate floral bracts.

Synonyms Bonatea darwinii Weale 1869; Bonatea saundersiae (Harv.) T.Durand & Schinz 1894; Habenaria cassidea Rchb.f. 1849; Habenaria saundersiae Harv.1863

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Die Orchideen Schlechter 1915 as Habenaria saundersiana; AOS Bulletin Vol 47 No 11 1978 photo; Wild Orchids of Southern Africa Stewart, Linder, Schelpe & Hall 1982 photo fide; Flora Zambesiaca Vol 11 Part 1 Pope 1995; African Orchids in the Wild and Cultivation La Croix 1997; Field Guide to the Orchids of Northern South Africa and Swaziland McMurty, Grobler, Grobler & Burns 2008 under B saundersiae as separate species; Terrestrial African Orchids, A select Review John S. Ball 2009 drawing fide

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