Epidendrum trachythece Schltr. 1907 GROUP Ramosum SUBGROUP Rugosum

Photo by © The Herbario Zamorano Website

Type Collection

Type Drawing by © Blanche Ames and The Epidendra Website


Drawing by © Jimenez, Hágsater & E.Santiago and The AMO Herbario Website

Part Shade Cool Cold Winter Spring Summer Fall

Common Name The Rough, Uneven Container Epidendrum [refers to the rugose sheaths]

Flower Size .4" [1 cm]

Found in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama in high, evergreen and cloud forests at elevations of 1250 to 2450 meters as a small to just medium sized, cool to cold growing epiphyte with branching, cane-like, terete stems enveloped by rugose sheaths, main branch tall, side branches half as long, floral and tertiary branches very short, arising from near the apex of the preceding stem, carrying to more than 10 on the main stem, 2 to 3 on the floral stems, articulate, linear-oblong, obtuse leaves that blooms at any time of the year on terminal, simultaneously 2 to 6 flowered inflorescence with as long as the ovary, conduplicate, ovate, obtuse floral bracts and carrying non-resupinate flowers.

Characterized by the branching, sinuous stems, the conduplicate, as long as the ovary floral bracts, 2 to 6 flowered inflorescence, narrowly ovate-elliptic sepals that are tinted with purple, and a white, cordiform lip with a wide, flattend, dentate callus.

"Epidendrum trachythece belongs to the GROUP Ramosum which is characterized by the monopodial, branching stems, the spike-like, distichous inflorescence, and the single callus, and the SUBGROUP Rugosum which has a branching habit with few-flowered inflorescences from short, secondary stems with the leaf-sheaths rugose. The species can be recognized by the inflorescence with 2 to 6 flowers, sepals widely ovate-elliptic, .08 to .12" [2mm to 3 mm] long, 7 to 9 veined, tinted purple, the lip white, wider than long, entire, transversely elliptic, base truncate, apex prominently apiculate, coriaceous, and especially the transversely laminar callus, forming a 3-lobed lamina, the lateral lobes prominent and wide, rounded, reaching the disc of the lip, the midlobe short, acute. It is similar to Epidendrum cordiforme C.Schweinf. which has larger, 1 or rarely 2 flowers, sepals .32 to .4" [8 to 10 mm] long, sepals lanceolate, acute, 5-veined, lip semi-orbicular-cordiform, prominently apiculate, ecallose, the disc with evident, radiating veins." Hagaster etal 2008


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; The Genus Epidendrum Ames 1936; The Orchids of Panama L.O. Williams & P Allen 1946; Ceiba Vol 5 No 1 L O Williams 1956; Las Orquideas de El Salvador Vol 1 Hamer 1974 drawing/photo fide; Icones Plantarum Tropicarum Plate 741 Hamer 1982 drawing fide; Selbyana Vol 10 Orchids of Central America Hamer 1988 drawing fide; Field Guide to the Orchids of Costa Rica and Panama Dressler 1993; Icones Plantarum Tropicarum Plate 1531 Mora & Atwood 1993 drawing fide; Manual de las Plantas de Costa Rica Vol 3 Hammel, Grayum, Herrera and Zamora 2003; Icones Orchidacearum Vol 8 Plate 872 Hagsater & Sanchez 2006 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum Vol 8 Plate 873 Hagsater & Sanchez 2006 see recognition section; Icones Orchidaceaerum 11 Plate 1188 Hagsater & Sanchez 2008 drawing fide; Orchids of Costa Rica Vol 3 Morales 2009 photo fide; Orchid Genera and Species in Guatemala Archila, Szlachchetko, Chiron, Lipinska, Mystkowska and Bertolini 2018