Masdevallia exquisita Luer & Hirtz 1993 SUBGENUS Masdevallia SECTION Masdevallia SUBSECTION Masdevallia

Another Flower Photo courtesy of Eric Hunt, plant grown by Musia Stagg.

Flower Closeup Photo courtesy of Lourens Grobler

Common Name The Choice Masdevallia

Flower Size 2 1/4" [5.5 cm]

A northern Bolivian and Peruvian, mini-miniature sized, cool growing species found in wet montane forests at elevations of 1800 to 2000 meters with slender, erect, blackish ramicauls enveloped by 2 to 3, loose, tubular sheaths carrying a single, apical, erect, coriaceous, elliptical, subacute leaf that is narrowly cuneate below into the petiole and blooms in the summer on slender, erect, 2 2/5" [6 cm] long inflorescence arising from low on the ramicaul with a thin bract near the base and a tubular floral bract that holds its solitary flower at or just below leaf height.

Distinguished from others by it's snow white sepals with a bright crimson suffusion on the middle 1/3 to 1/2 and orange towards the base, the sepals are sparsely long-pubescent above the middle, the sepaline tails are long and slender and the deflexed acute lip has a black tip.

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; A Treasure of Masdevallia Vol 22 Luer & Dalstroem 1997 watercolor/drawing fide; AOS Bulletin Vol 68 No 4 1999 photo fide; Icones Pleurothallidinarum XXII Systematics of Masdevallia Part 3 Luer 2001 drawing fide; Orchid Digest Vol 72 No 4 2008 photo fide; Orchid Species of Peru Zelenko Bermudez 2009 photo fide