Epidendrum karstenii Rchb.f. GROUP Arbuscula SUBGROUP Incomptum

Another Flower plant in situ 3000 meters, Bosca de Fusca Cundinamarca Colombia

Another Flower plant in situ 3000 meters, Bosca de Fusca Cundinamarca Colombia

Photos by © Jay Pfahl

Another Flower

Photo by © RoCol and his Flickr Photo Website


Original Drawing by © Padre Pedro Ortiz Conserved at the Herbario de la Universidad Javeriana, Bogota Colombia


Drawing by © Jimenez, Hágsater & E.Santiago and The AMO Herbario Website


Common Name Karsten's Epidendrum [German Plant collector in Colombia and Venezuela 1800's]

Flower Size .4" [1 cm]

Found in Cundinamarca, Boyaca and Magdalena departments of Colombia at elevations around 2600 to 2900 meters as a small to large sized, cold growing epiphyte with many branching stems each arising from an intermediate node of the previous, simple, cane-like, terete stem enveloped by loose, tubular, striate, minutely verrucose, leafless to leaf-bearing sheaths and carrying 1 to 3, narrowly elliptic-lanceolate, acute, subcoriaceous leaves that blooms in the winter and early spring on a terminal, nodding, racemose, 8 to 10 inflorescence that is 2 winged, the wings prolonged into the triangular, acuminate floral bracts that are as long as the ovaries and carry simultaneously opening, resupinate flowers.

"Epidendrum karstenii belongs to the GROUP Arbuscula SUBGROUP Incomptum which is characterized by the successive lateral growths produced from the middle of the previous growth, few leaves aggregated towards the apex of the stems, a short apical inflorescence with fleshy greenish to violet-green flowers with short ovaries, the lip entire to 3-lobed. The species can be recognized by small plants, 1 to 3 leaves per stem, the simultaneous flowers forming a compact, cylindrical, noddlng inflorescence, the 3-lobed lip with the apical lobe subquadrate and somewhat emarginate, the flowers small, sepals .24 to .28" [6 to 7 mm] long, the ligulate petals and straight column. It is somewhat comparable to E. curtisii A. D. Hawkes, but that species is much larger overall, the inflorescence forms a compact spherical raceme, sepals being over .4" [10 mm] long, the sepals are oblanceolate, and the proportions of the lip quite different, the midlobe being much wider than long, and the lateral lobes suborbicular. The narrow, cylindrical raceme is shared by Epidendrum stenostachyum Hágsater & E. Santiago, also from the Sierra Nevada, and which has a different growth mode, with a long, monopodial main stem and numerous subapical branches, the lip is entire, slightly retuse at the apex." Hagsater etal 2007


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 7: 248 Schlechter 1920 as E karsteni; Icones Orchidacearum 3 Plate 375 Hagsater 1999 see recognition section; Orquideas Nativas del Tachira Cesar Fernandez 2003 photo ok; Icones Orchidacearum 7 Plate 791 Hagsater and Sanchez 2004 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 9 Plate 949 Hagsater & Sanchez 2007 drawing fide; Orquideas, Tesoro de Colombia Vol 2 Ortiz & Uribe 2017 drawing fide/Photo good; Icones Orchidacearum 16[2] Plate 1671 Hagsater & Sanchez 2018 See recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 18(2) Plate 1876 Hagsater & Jimenez 2021 LCDP Photo/photo