Stelis flexuosissima Luer & Hirtz 2002 SUBSECTION Stelis


Photos by Duane Mcdowell and his Flickr Orchid Photo Website

TYPE Drawing

TYPE Drawing by Carl Luer and Icones Pleurothallidinarum Vol XXIV A First Century of Stelis of Ecuador Part 1 Luer 2002



Drawings by Carl Luer and Selbyana 32(1,2): 47 Luer & Vasquez 2018

Common Name The Most Flexuous Stelis

Flower Size .2" [6mm]

Found in Zamora-Chinchipe province of Ecuador in montane forests at elevations around 2100 to 3100 meters as a small sized, cool to cold growing, caespitose epiphyte with erect, slender ramicauls enveloped by a tubular sheath above the middle and 2 more at the base and carrying a single, apical, erect, coriaceous, elliptical, acute, cuneate below into the petiolate base leaf that blooms in the summer on an erect to suberect, arising from an annulus below the apex of the ramicaul, flexible, flexuous, subcongested, 5 to 9.2" [12.5 to 23 cm] long, successively 1 to 4, many flowered, racemose inflorescence with oblique, acute, as long as to longer than the ovary floral bracts.

"This species is uncommon in Ecuador, where it was described, but it is frequent and extremely variable in Bolivia. It seems to be speciating into two taxa, one with thicker, three-veined petals, and the other, with petals not as thick, and single-veined. The variation of the petal is not associated with any of the innumerable number of characters found in the vegetative and floral variations of species. The variations are sympatric. Plants vary in size from small to large; the leaves are narrowly elliptical, acute and petiolate; and the inflorescence with a long peduncle far surpasses the leaf. The many-flowered raceme is loose and variable in the degree of flexion, from marked to nearly strict. The sepals are less than three millimeters long, ovate, three-veined, and long-pubescent; the petals are either single-veined, or three-veined with a transverse carina. The lip is type A with many minor variations." Luer 2018

For all intents and purposes this plant is just a monster version of S concinna. The only difference with the inflorescene and flowers are the distinct floral bracts which are not evident easily on S concinna and the more flexuous inflorescence.

SEE ALSO S flexuosa

Synonyms Stelis stephanii B.Steud. 2011

References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ;

* Icones Pleurothallidinarum Vol XXIV A First Century of Stelis of Ecuador Part 1 Luer 2002;

Icones Pleurothallidinarum Vol XXIV A First Century of Stelis of Ecuador Part 1 Luer 2002 drawing good

Phytotaxa 38: 49 B Steud 2011 as S stephanii;

Selbyana 32(1,2): 47 Luer & Vasquez 2018

Selbyana 32(1,2): 135 Luer & Vasquez 2018 Drawing fide