Disa welwitschii Rchb.f. 1865 SUBGENUS Micranthe Photo by Williamson


Photo courtesy of Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz and their Website

DrawingTYPE Drawing by Summerhayes

Full sun Warm Cool Spring

Common Name Welwitsch's Disa [Austrian Botanist in Angola 1800's]

Flower Size .6" [1.5 cm]

Found in Guinea, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Burundi, Cenral African Republic, Cameroon, Congo, Gabon, Zaire, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Angola, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Transvaal South Africa in damp areas in full sun at elevations of 600 to 2000 meters as a small to medium sized, cold growing terrestrial that blooms in the spring on an erect, terminal, to 8 to 20" [to 20 to 50 cm] long, many imbricate flowered inflorescence.

Both flowers above in the first photo are D welwitschii and show the great diversity in flower form and color

Similar to D roeperocharoides but this one has smaller flowers and a different petal shape

Synonyms Disa breyeri Schltr.1924; Disa calophylla Kraenzl. 1902; Disa hyacinthina Kraenzl. 1912; Disa ignea Kraenzl. 1902; Disa occultans Schltr. 1922; Disa subaequalis Summerh. 1936; Disa tanganyikensis Summerh. 1964; Disa welwitschii subsp. occultans (Schltr.) H.P.Linder 1981; Disa welwitschii var. buchneri Schltr. 1901; Disa welwitschii var. occultans (Schltr.) Geerinck 1982

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Orchids of East Africa Piers 1968; Flora Of Tropical East Africa Vol 1 Summerhayes 1968; Flora Of Tropical East Africa Vol 1 Summerhayes 1968 as D tanganyikaensis; Die Orchideen 3 Auflage Bd 1 Sonderabdruck aus Schlechter Lieferung 5 257- 320 Brieger, Maatsch and Senghas 1974; The Orchids of South Central Africa Williamson 1977 drawing/photo fide; Wild Orchids of Southern Africa Stewart, Linder, Schelpe & Hall 1982; Flora Zambesiaca Vol 11 Orchidaceae Part 1 Pope 1995; Flora Zambesiaca Vol 11 Orchidaceae Part 1 Pope 1995 as D welwitschii subspoccultans; The Orchids of Kenya Stewart & Campbell 1996 as D welwitschii var occultans photo fide; Orchids of Southern Africa Linder & Kurzweil 1999 photo fide; Terrestrial African Orchids, A select Review John S. Ball 2009 drawing fide