Platystele ovalifolia (H.Focke) Garay & Dunst. 1961

Photo by Fredy Archila

Plant and Flower

Photo by Andre Cardoso and his Flickr Orchid Photo Website


Drawing by Fredy Archila

to springSummer

Common Name The Oval Shaped Leaf Platystele

Flower Size .1" [2.5mm]

Found in El Salvador, Cuba, Trinidad & Tobago, Venezuela, Guyana, French Guiana, Surinam and Brazil in cloud forests at elevations of 450 to 750 meters as a mini-miniature sized, hot to warm growing, mini-miniature sized epiphyte with ascending, stout ramicauls enveloped by 1 to 2 thin sheaths and carrying a single, apical, suberect to prostrate, thick, fleshy, minutely apiculate, broadly elliptic to suborbicular, rounded to cuneate below into the petiolate base leaf that blooms in the spring and summer on an erect to suberect, pale green, filiform, .2 to .4" [.5 to 1 cm] long including the .2" [5 mm] long peduncle, successively several flowered inflorescence.

"This minute, creeping species with broadly ovate, sessile, more or less prostrate and overlapping leaves usually no more than .2" [5 mm] long, forms dense mats sometimes 4 to 8" [10 to 20 cm] across. The tiny yellowish flowers are borne a short distance above the leaves in a successively few flowered raceme. The flowers are simple with ovate, acute, and entire sepals , petals and lip." Luer 1990

Synonyms Pleurothallis ovalifolia (H.Focke) Rchb.f. 1861; Pleurothallis rhomboglossa Rchb.f. 1865; Pleurothallis vaginulata Griseb. 1866; *Stelis ovalifolia H.Focke 1849

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Symbolae Antillanae Vol VI Orchidaceae Urban 1909 as Pleurothallis rhomboglossa Rchb.f 1865; Native Orchids of Trinidad Schultes 1960 as Pleurothallis ovalifolia; Venezuelan Orchids Illustrated Vol 2 Dunsterville & Garay 1961 drawing good; Flora de Venezuela Volumen 15 Parte 2 Foldats 1970 as Pleurothallis ovalifolia drawing good; Die Orchideen 3 Auflage Bd 1 Sonderabdruck aus Schlechter Lieferung 8 449 - 512 Brieger, Maatsch and Senghas 1976; Orchids of Venezuela, An Illustrated Field Guide Vol 3 Dunsterville & Garay 1979 drawing good; Las Orquedias de El Salvador Vol 3 Hamer 1981 drawing good/photo good; The Orchids of Surinam Werkhoven 1986 photo good; Catologo Descriptivo de Las Orquideas Cubanas Acuna 1987 as Pleurothallis rhomboglossa; Icones Pleurothallidinarum Vol VII Systematics of Platystele Luer 1990 drawing fide; Guatemala Y Sus Orquideas Behar & Tinschert 1998 photo fide; Orchid Digest Vol 63 #3 1999 photo fide; Orchids of Venezuela [An illustrated field guide] Vol. 3 Ramiro and Carnevali 2000 drawing good; Orchidaceae Antillanae Nir 2000; Flora of the Venezuelan Guayana Vol 7 Steyermark, Berry, Yatskievych and Holst 2003