Pleurothallis imperialis Luer 1975 SUBGENUS Pleurothallis SECTION Macrophyllae-Fasciculatae Lindl 1859 Photo courtesy of Lourens Grobler

Plant and Flower Photo courtesy of Dale and Deni Borders.

Flower Closeup Photo courtesy of Patricia Harding.

Another clone and color form Photo courtesy of Weyman Bussey, plant grown by Jim Hamilton.


Common Name The Imperial Pleurothallis

Flower Size 2/5" [1 cm]

This is a small sized, Ecuadorian and Colombian, cool to cold growing epiphytic or terrestrial species found on steep embankments at an altitude of 1000-2500 meters in very wet montane cloud forests with an elongate, stem enveloped basally by 2 to 3 tubular sheaths and carrying a single, apical, cordate leaf and blooms in the winter and spring on an apical, short to 1" [2.5 cm], fasciculate, successively single flowered inflorescence arising from a spathe, that holds the flower close to the leaf base.

Distinguished by its large habit, large spreading, deeply cordate leaf and a large colorful flower with obtuse and multiveined sepals, broad, convex, and mostly glabrous except for the microscopically cellular-glandular margins and a transversely obovoid lip with a protruding, pouch-like apex. Similar to the related P marthae but it has rugose-verrucose lip and spiculate petals.

Synonyms Acronia imperialis [Luer] Luer 2005; Zosterophyllanthos imperialis ( Luer ) Szlach. & Marg. 2002

References W3 Tropicos Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Icones Planetarum Tropicarum plate 236 Dodson 1980 drawing fide; Icones Pleurothallidinarum Systematics of Pleurothallis Vol 3 Luer 1986; Orchids from The Coast Of Ecuador Arosemana, Jurado, Estrada and Konanz 1988 photo not; Native Ecuadorian Orchids Vol 4 Dodson 2003 drawing fide; Icones Pleurothallidinarum XXVII Systematics of Dryadella and Acronia Section Macrophyllae-Fasciculatae Luer 2005 as Acronia imperialis drawing fide