Ornithocephalus iridifolius Rchb. f. 1863

Photos by Karl Senghas and The Swiss Orchid Foundation at the Jany Renz Herbaria Website

Plant and Flowers

Photo courtesy of Nick Doe

Part shadeHot to Cool Summer

Common Name The Iris-Like Leaf Ornithocephalus

Flower Size to almost 1/4" [5 mm]

Found in Guatemala, Mexico and El Salvador in open oak forests, deciduous tropical forests or coffee plantations as a small, epiphytic, hot to cool growing species at altitudes up to 1200 meters with fan-shaped, linear-ensiform, fleshy, acute to acuminate leaves that blooms in the summer on an erect, slender, axillary, to 3" [4 to 8 cm] long, racemose, laxly many flowered inflorescence that has a zig-zag rachis and suborbicular-cordate, keeled on reverse, erose ciliate floral bracts and small, white flowers.

This species is best mounted on cork, tree fern or wood, given shady, humid conditions with even, year round waterings.

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI Encyclopedia of Cultivated Orchids Hawkes 1965; Flora Novo-Galaciana Vol 16 McVaugh 1985; The Manual Of Cultivated Orchid Species Bechtel, Cribb & Launert 1992; Mille et Une Mini Orchideees Roguenant 2009 photo fide; Orchid Genera and Species in Guatemala Archila, Szlachchetko, Chiron, Lipinska, Mystkowska and Bertolini 2018