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Arthrochilus prolixus D.L.Jones
Family Orchidaceae
Arthrochilus prolixus D.L.Jones APNI*

Description: Terrestrial herb.

Leaves 2–6, flattened against the ground or obliquely erect, produced on a lateral shoot after flowering commences; linear to lanceolate, to 7 cm long and 15 mm wide, dull bluish green in upper surface.

Inflorescence to 32 cm high, with a few ovate sheathing bracts, to 22-flowered. Flowers pale green with purple to reddish hairs. Dorsal sepal to 10 mm long, linear and embracing the column. Lateral sepals and lateral petals to 7 mm long, lanceolate and deflexed against the ovary. Labellum claw (above hinge) short and < 4 mm long; labellum lamina lacking lateral lobes, the midlobe curving downward and entire. Callus ornamented with a sparse, fringe of long cilia, the centre with a few hairs and papillae graduating into an elongated horn with a cleft to 2-lobed tip. Column foot short, broad and anvil-shaped; column neck at least twice as long as the column foot, steeply angled from the ovary and curving upward in a distinct semicircle. Column wings adjacent to the anther, linear to sickle-shaped; column wings on style broad-triangular with a few purple spots. Stigma elliptic, sunken.

Photo J. & P. Edwards


Flowering: December–February

Distribution and occurrence: Chiefly along the coast north from the Manly district, with the most extensive colonies near Bulahdelah.

Grows on forested slopes and ridges between grassy tufts or shrubs in sandy and clay loams, also on rotting sawdust heaps near old sawmills.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC
Other Australian states: Qld
AVH map***

Text by P. Bernhardt
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 4 (1993)

APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.
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