Epidendrum hondurense Ames 1933 GROUP Pseudepidendrum SUBGROUP Densiflorum


Photo/Drawing © by R Jimenez and The AMO Herbaria Website


Common Name The Honduran Epidendrum

Flower Size

Found in Honduras, Belize and Chiapas statre of Mexico and in the Selva Lacandona, expected in Petén, Guatemala in hill forests and flooded vegetation at elevations of 200 to 400 meters as a large sized, hot to warm growing caespitose epiphyte with simple, cane-like, terete at the base, somewhat laterally compressed at the apex, thin, erect, base covered by 3 to 5, tubular, non-foliar, scarious and becoming fibrous with time sheaths, straight stems carrying 9 to 13, distributed nearly throughout the stem, spreading, articulate, alternate, unequal in size, the basal ones smaller, sub-coriaceous, with tubular, minutely striated sheaths; blade 7narrowly elliptic, acute, margin entire, green, sometimes the underside tinged somewhat purple leaves that blooms in the late winter and early spring in situ, fall in cultivation, apical, racemose at first flowering, slightly arching, peduncle [10.8" [27 cm] long, laterally compressed, straight, totally covered by 6 tubular bracts 2.8 to 3.6" [7 to 9 cm] long, in addition to 4 to 5 apical bracts 1.8 to 2.6" [45 to 65 mm] long, narrowly triangular, acuminate, spreading bracts, 18 to 24" [45 to 60 cm] long, overall, simultaneously 30 to 40 flowered per raceme with unequal in size, those of the basal flowers much larger than the ovary, the apical ones shorter, ca. 1/4 length of the ovary, narrowly triangular, acuminate, amplexicaul floral bracts and carrying simultaneous, resupinate, herbaly fragrant, agreeable in the morning and becoming disagreeable towards the sunset, fleshy flowers with the sepals and petals ochre-green, lip ivory white.

"Epidendrum hondurense belongs to GROUP Pseudepidendrum which is characterized by caespitose plants, cane-like stems, acute to acuminate leaves, usually apical inflorescence, without any spathaceous bract, though it may have several bracts, the mostly filiform petals and the lip usually 3-lobed (with 3 parallel fleshy keels), the apical lobe often bifurcate, the “bird-wing” type pollinia, at least the inner pair, and the SUBGROUP Densiflorum where the short-pedunculate inflorescence is usually paniculate, flowering only once, flowers are green, the apex of the column and disc of the lip creamy-white, the calli sometimes tinged purple, the petals are linear-oblong to linear-oblanceolate, never filiform, and the pollinia unequal in shape, only the inner pair “bird-wing” like. The new species, till now has only produced racemose inflorescences, 18 to 24" [45 to 60 cm] long overall, apical, slightly arching; peduncle 10.8" [27 cm] long, laterally compressed, straight, totally covered by 6 tubular bracts 2.8 tio 3.6" [7 to 9 cm] long, in addition to 4 to 5 apical bracts 1.8 to 2.8" [45 to 65 mm] long, narrowly triangular, acuminate, sepals are .48 to .56" [12 to 14 mm] long, ochre-green with an ivory-white lip, lateral lobes ovate-dolabriform, sepals and ovary scarcely and minutely verrucose, and the disc of the lip with 3 ribs. Epidendrum isthmii Schltr. has a much shorter paniculate inflorescence with slightly larger flowers, sepals .52 to .62" [13 to 15.5 mm] long, the flowers greenish with the disc of the lip creamy white, often surrounded by a green margin. Epidendrum isthmoides Hágsater & E.Santiago has large plants, chartaceous, elliptic leaves with the veins clearly marked, 5.2 to 9" x 1.2 to 2" [13 to 23 x 3 to 5 cm]; the creamy green flowers with the floral segments partly spreading, sepals .36 to .4 [9 to 10 mm] long, the lip immaculate, with a short isthmus between the lateral lobes and the mid-lobe. The flowers are reminiscent of Epidendrum hassleri Cogn. which has a paniculate inflorescences (the type is racemose), sepals and petals similar, but the lip wider between the lateral lobes than between the lobes of the mid-lobe directed upwards, and the ovary .6 to 1" [15 to 25 mm] long, and is endemic to the border areas of Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil." Hagaster etal 2018


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Icones Orchidacearum 16(1) plate 1625 Hagsater etal 2018 Drawing/photo fide; Orchid Genera and Species in Guatemala Archila, Szlachchetko, Chiron, Lipinska, Mystkowska and Bertolini 2018