Epidendrum saxicola Kraenzl. 1905 GROUP Saxicola TYPE for the group
Photo by M. Salas G./Drawing by © R Jimenez M. and The AMO Herbaria Website
Common Name The Rock Living Epidendrum
Flower Size 1" [2.5 cm]
Found in southern Peru in cold, very wet cloud forests at elevations of 2800 to 3400 meters as a small sized, cold growing lithophyte with, thickened, furrowed and rugose; each pseudobulb produced from a climbing rhizome, all forming a fusiform pseudobulb, 1.8" [4.5 cm] long, nearly totally covered by a single, membranaceous, scarious and becoming fibrous with age sheath and carrying a single apical, petiolate, the petiole conduplicate, articulate, coriaceous, dorsally transversely rugose, blade oblong-elliptic, apex obtuse, slightly bilobed, margin entire, slightly revolute leaf that blooms in the fall and early winter on a terminal, arising through a single oblanceolate, conduplicate, apex rounded spathe, peduncle 1.28 to 1.6" [3.2 to 4.0 cm] long, laterally compressed, thin, erect, straight, slightly longer than the spathe; rachis .2" [5 mm] long, very short, 2.8 to 3.2" [7 to 8 cm] long (including the flowers), apical, erect, racemose, simultaneously 2 flowered inflorescence with much shorter than the ovary, triangular-ovate, acute, embracing floral bracts and carrying generally opposite, resupinate flowers with dirty pale purple brown to pink sepals, petals and lip white tinged purple to pale green, column pale green to greenish white at the apex with fragrance not registered.
"Epidendrum saxicola Kraenzl. belongs to the GROUP Saxicola and TYPE for the group characterized by the pseudobulbous stems, racemose inflorescence subtended by a prominent spathaceous bract, and few, showy flowers, either resupinate or non-resupinate. The species is recognized by the sepals dirty pale purple brown to pink, petals and lip white tinged purple to pale green, sepals .68 to .72" [17 to 18 mm] long, oblong-elliptic, petals .6 to .72" x .1 to .12" [15 to 18 x 2.5 to 3.0 mm], linear-oblanceolate, and the lip sub-orbicular to widely cordiform with small globose calli. It is similar to Epidendrum magnisaxicola Hágsater, Edquén & E.Santiago which has greenish-yellow, concolor flowers, sepals .96 to 1" [24 to 25 mm] long, petals 1 x .16" [25 x 4.0 mm], and a lip ovate-rhombic, base truncate. Epidendrum milpoënse Hágsater & E.Santiago has green concolor flowers, sepals .72 to .76" [18 to 19 mm] long, petals .64 to .7" x .2 to .28" [16.0 to 17.5 x 5 to 7 mm] rhombic-spatulate, and the lip widely cordiform with 3 ribs on the disc. Epidendrum harmsianum Kraenzl. has sulphur-yellow flowers, sepals .64" [16 mm] long, petals .6" [15 mm] long, oblanceolate, and the lip transversely ovate-oblong, base sub-cordate. Epidendrum becerrae has a creeping habit, fusiform, uni-foliate pseudobulbs, the erect, few-flowered inflorescence, non-resupinate, second, purple flowers, the petals oblanceolate, the cordiform lip united to the column throughout. It is somewhat reminiscent of Epidendrum micro-cattleya, but that species has 2 flowers, with the lip oriented inwards, towards each other, the petals about as wide as the sepals, and the lip produced from a sigmoid claw at the middle of the column, the column itself with a pair of prominent, short, wide, dolabriform wings. Epidendrum microcattleyioides D.E.Benn. & Christenson has 4 non-resupinate, yellow flowers, the margin white, the flowers crowded at the apex of the peduncle, which does not surpass the surrounding spathaceous bract, the lip is reniform with the apex widely emarginate, the petals wide, obovate-spatulate, the lateral sepals are not obliquely joined to the column, and the ovary is geniculate." Adapted from E beccerrae Icones Orchidacearum 14 Plate 1411 Hagsater & Sanchez
CAUTION NOTE: The name Epidendrum saxicola has been used for a number of species of similar vegetative habit and superficially similar flowers, totally disregarding the color notes and other details. Several new species are described in this and a previous volume, in addition to some older ones to sort out this group: E. acjanacoense Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte, E. becerrae Hágsater & E.Santiago, E. galianoi Hágsater, E.Santiago, J.Duarte & L.Valenz., Epidendrum harmsianum Kraenzl., E. herreranum C.Schweinf., E. incognitum Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte, E. kosnipataense Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte, E. lutescens Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte, E. macrogastrium Kraenzl., E. magnisaxicola Hágsater, E.Santiago & Edquén, E. micro-cattleya Schltr., E. microcattleyioides D.E.Benn. & Christenson, E. milpoënse Hágsater & E.Santiago, E. monzonense Kraenzl., E. pallidovirens Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte, E. pseudomagnisaxicola L.Valenz., E.Santiago & Hágsater, E. repaskyae Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte, E. tetartociclium Collantes & Hágsater, and E. wayqechaense Hágsater, E.Santiago & J.Duarte 2003" Hagsater etal 2020
References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Orchids of Peru Vol 2 Schweinfurth 1959; *Icones Orchidacearum Peruviarum Plate 652 Bennett & Christenson 2001 drawing fide; Machu Picchu Orchids Christenson 2003 photo fide; Icones Orchidacearum 14 Plate 1411 Hagsater & Sanchez 2003 see recognition section; Orchids of Bolivia Vol II Laelinae Vasquez & Ibisch 2004 photo fide; Orchid Species of Peru Zelenko Bermudez 2009 as E aff saxicola photo good; Icones Orchidacearum 17(1) Plate 1735 Hagsater & Jimenez 2019 see recognition setion; Icones Orchidacearum 17(1) Plate 1741 Hagsater & Jimenez 2019 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(1) Plate 1767 Hagsater & Jimenez 2019 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(2) Plate 1773 Hagsater & Jimenez 2020 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(2) Plate 1774 Hagsater & Jimenez 2020 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(2) Plate 1778 Hagsater & Jimenez 2020 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(1) Plate 1785 Hagsater & Jimenez 2019 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(1) Plate 1792 Hagsater & Jimenez 2019 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 17(1) Plate 1796 Hagsater & Jimenez 2019 Drawing/photo fide; Icones Orchidacearum 18(2) Plate 1895 Hagsater & Jimenez 2021 see recognition section