Habenaria petitiana (A.Rich.) T.Durand & Schinz 1894 SECTION Pseudoperistylus P F Hunt

Plant and Flowers in situPhoto courtesy of Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Herbarium Jany Renz and their Website

Fragrance Part sun Cool Cold Summer

Common Name Petit's Habenaria [French Collector of species 1800's]

Flower Size 1/2" [1.25 cm]

Found in Cameroon, Zaire, Burundia, Rwanda, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Natal and Transvaal South Africa in short grasslands, among scrub or at the forests edge at elevations of 1700 to 3150 meters as a giant sized, cool to cold growing terrestrial with an ellipsoid tuber giving rise to an erect, leafy stem carrying 5 to 9, lowest 2 sheathing, all others ovate, acute often undulate margins, basally clasping leaves that blooms in the summer on an erect, 2 to 8" [5 to 20 cm] long, laxly to fairly densely many flowered inflorescence with lanceolate, acute, longer than the ovaries floral bracts and carrying fragrant flowers

In all the references I have there seems to be two species described here. In the ones marked fide below the inflorescence is densely many flowered with wide open sepals. The ones marked no have a lax, very small flowered inflorescence with very closed flowers. I await more information. Use with caution.

Synonyms Habenaria brachylobos (Summerh.) Summerh.1933; Habenaria microrhynchos Schltr. 1895; Herminium natalense Rchb.f. 1881; Herminium steudneri Rchb.f. 1881; Montolivaea petitiana (A.Rich.) Szlach. 2001; Peristylus brachylobos Summerh. 1931; Peristylus natalensis (Rchb.f.) Rolfe 1912; *Peristylus petitianus A.Rich.1840; Peristylus snowdenii Rolfe 1918; Peristylus steudneri (Rchb.f.) Rolfe 1898; Peristylus ugandensis Rolfe 1918; Peristylus volkensianus (Kraenzl.) Rolfe 1898; Platanthera natalensis (Rchb.f.) Schltr. 1890; Platanthera petitiana (A.Rich.) Engl. 1892; Platanthera volkensiana Kraenzl. 1895; Pseudoperistylus petitianus (A.Rich.) Szlach. & Olszewski 1998

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Otia Botanica Hamburgensia Rchb.f 1881 as Herminium natalense; Encyclopedia of Cultivated Orchids Hawkes 1965 as Peristylus steudneri; Encyclopedia of Cultivated Orchids Hawkes 1965 as Peristylus volkensianus; Encyclopedia of Cultivated Orchids Hawkes 1965 as Peristylus petianus; Orchids of East Africa Piers 1968 no; Flora of Tropical East Africa Part 1 Summerhayes 1968; The Orchids of South Central Africa Williamson 1977 drawing hmm; Wild Orchids of Southern Africa Stewart, Linder, Schelpe & Hall 1982; Flora Zambesiaca Volume 11 Part one Pope 1998; Rudolf Schlechter Die Orchideen Lieferung 40 2000 as Pseudoperistylus petitianus drawing ok; Field Guide to Ethiopian Orchids Demissew, Cribb and Rasmussen 2004 photo fide; Field Guide to the Orchids of Northern South Africa and Swaziland McMurty, Grobler, Grobler & Burns 2008 photo no; Terrestrial African Orchids, A select Review John S. Ball 2009 drawing no; Orchidaceae of West Central Africa Vol 1 Szlatchecko etal 2010 as Montolivaea petitiana drawing fide