Epidendrum lesteri Hágsater & Dodson 2004 GROUP Ferreyae

TYPE Drawing by Jimenez and The AMO Herbaria Website

Fragrant Part Shade Cold Summer

Common Name Lester’s Epidendrum [Ecuadorian Nurseryman and collector of species current]

Flower Size 1.2” [3 cm]

Found in Zamora Chinchipe province of Ecuador on the eastern slope of the Andes at elevations of 2200 to 2350 meters as a suberect, sympodial epiphyte with simple, cane-like, terete, thick stems carrying 9 to 13, all along the apical 2/3’s of the stem, distichous, spreading, some recurved, coriaceous, narrowly lanceolate, acute, low dorsal keel, dark green above, reddish beneath, smooth, margin entire leaves that blooms in the summer on a terminal, arising through a conduplicate, lanceolate, subacute, margin entire, slightly revolute, reddish pink spathe, paniculate, heavy with 4 to 5, nutant, to about 70 flowered racemes, peduncle short, terete, thick, straight, with a large bract at the base of each raceme, rachis hidden by the flowers, densely, simultaneously 280 to 350 flowered inflorescence with much shorter than the ovary, triangular, acute floral bracts and carrying greenish strongly tinted with pale burgundy red, softly fragrant flowers.

"Epidendrum lesteri belongs to the GROUP Ferreyae which is characterized by the sympodial, caespitose habit, cane-like stems with numerous leaves, apical inflorescence subtended by 1 to 2 large spathes, and a nutant, heavy racemose to paniculate inflorescence with numerous large, fleshy, attractive flowers. The species is recognized by the teree stem, lanceolate, acute, dark green leaves with the underside reddish, the pink colored, subacute spathe, nutant, dense-f1owered inflorescence branching near the base into several similar racemes, and the greenish, pale burgundy-red tinged flowers; the lip deeply cordate. It closely resembles Epidendrum orthoclinium which has narrower leaves, a more lax-flowered inflorescence, smaller, greenish yellow flowers, acute petals, and the clinandrium hood upturned, with the margin erose. Epidendrum excisum Lindl. has laterally flattened stems, an erect, lax-flowered paniculate inflorescence, the light yellowish-green flowers more or less tinged with copper. Epidendrum tenuispathum C. Schweinf. has a somewhat similar habit, with an erect, paniculate inflorescence, and the lip is wider than long." Hagsater etal 2004


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; * Icones Orchidacearum 7 plate 753 Hagsater & Dodson 2004 drawing fide; Icones Orchidacearum 9 Plate 936 Hagsater 2007 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 15 [2] Plate 1570 Hagsater & Sanchez 2016 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 18(2) Plate 1874 Hagsater & Jimenez 2021 see recognition section