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Genus Dipodium Family Orchidaceae

Description: Terrestrial saprophytic [or climbing to epiphytic] herbs, sympodial [or monpododial]; roots subterranean, fleshy [or aerial or creeping over the surface of the substrate and somewhat fibrous].

Leaves scale-like and reddish purple [or well-developed and green], crowded on short shoots [or scattered along the stem], several [to many] per shoot, distichous, conduplicate.

Inflorescence racemose, many-flowered, lateral; flowers resupinate [or not]. Sepals and lateral petals free, similar. Labellum free, attached at base of column; lamina 3-lobed, bearing a prominent basal callus and a central line of dense hairs. Column lacking free filament and style; column wings fused to column, narrow or apparently absent. Column foot absent. Anther incumbent, cap-like. Pollinia 2, waxy. Stigma entire. Rostellum not prominent, ventral.


Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 20 species, Malesia, Australia, Melanesia, New Caledonia. Australia: 11 species (10 species endemic), all States.

Text by P. H. Weston
Taxon concept:

 Key to the species 
1Sepals and lateral petals greenish yellow with maroon spots and streaksDipodium hamiltonianum
Sepals and lateral petals white to pink with darker spots or blotches or uniformly pink to purple2
2Pedicel plus ovary spottedDipodium variegatum
Pedicel plus ovary unspotted
                       Back to 1
3
3Sepals and lateral petals straight to slightly recurved4
Sepals and lateral petals strongly recurved towards the tips
                       Back to 2
5
4Sepals and lateral petals almost flat, straight, mid pink with heavy dark blotchingDipodium pulchellum
Sepals and lateral petals cupped, often slightly recurved, pink with heavy darker purple blotching
                       Back to 3
Dipodium punctatum
5Sepals and lateral petals light pink with fine, darker spotsDipodium roseum
Sepals and lateral petals dark reddish purple, heavily blotched with darker purple
                       Back to 3
Dipodium atropurpureum

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