Platanthera pollostantha R.M.Bateman & M.Moura 2013

Comparrison of the three Azorean species - All specimens were collected in 1838 by Karl Hochstetter and are currently held at the University of Tübingen. (A, B) P. pollostantha. (C, D) P. micrantha. (E, F) P. azorica. Compare (C) and (E) with the original line drawings shown as Fig. 27. Scale bar for (B, C, E) = 10 mm. Images: R Bateman Photos by © R M Bateman and The PeerJ Website

Common Name The Smallest Flowered Plantanthera [ refers to its having flowers even smaller than P micrantha - The Short Spurred Butterfly Orchid

Flower Size

Found in all the Azores and is the most widespread and common Platanthera on the islands at elevations of [250] 400 to 1000 meters in laurasilva scrub, rough grasslands above lavas and in alpine grasslans as a medium sized, cool to cold growing terrestrial with a broadly fusiform tuber narrowing below into a single, long fleshy, apical root all giving rise to an erect, 10" [25 cm] long stem carrying 2, broadly ovate-obovate, usually spreading, rarely with an elongate petiolate base sheathing leaves and a few, bracteoidal leaves, evenly spaced along the stem and grading above into the bracts that blooms an erect 3.1" [7.7 cm] long, 36 to 40 flowered inflorescence with lanceolate floral bracts carrying strongly musk and spice scented flowers.

There are now 3 recognized Platanthera endemic to the Azores P azorica, P micrantha and P pollostantha. See comparrison Collection photo above of the three types.


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; *PeerJ 1(e218): 60 2013 R.M.Bateman & M.Moura photo fide; Orchid Digest Vol 78 #2 2014;