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Genoplesium ectopum D.L.Jones
Family Orchidaceae
Genoplesium ectopum D.L.Jones APNI*

Synonyms: Genoplesium sp. aff. systenum (Brindabellas) sensu Bishop (1996) APNI*
Corunastylis ectopa (D.L.Jones) D.L.Jones & M.A.Clem. APNI*

Description: Terrestrial tuberous herb.

Leaf 10–25 cm long, 1.5–3.0 mm wide, terete, dark green with reddish base, lamina sheathing the scape, free lamina 15–20 mm long and 2.0–3.0 mm wide, ending 10–20 mm below the first flower.

Inflorescence 30–60 mm long above leaf, bearing 15–35 flowers in a densely crowded spike 20–40 mm long; flowers opening in sequence from the base; pedicel and ovary straight, 1.5–2.5 mm long. Flowers porrect, green and reddish purple to wholly reddish purple, 5.0–5.5 mm wide. Dorsal sepal greenish with 1 to 3 central purple stripes along veins and purplish margins; 3.0–4.0 mm long, 2.3–2.5 mm wide, broadly-ovate, concave, margins ciliate, apex acuminate. Lateral sepals green in flower bud, darkening with flower opening and age to deep maroon 4.0–5.0 mm long, 1.2–1.5 mm wide, lanceolate-falcate, widest just above base where weakly dilated on one margin (the margin closest to the axis of floral symmetry), with the dilated portion inrolled, concave toward apex, apex acute to apiculate, bearing a short non-glandular apiculus. Petals 3.0 mm long, 1.0 mm wide, narrow lanceolate, apex acuminate, margins sparsely ciliate; greenish at base and maroon toward apex. Labellum reddish-purple, 3.5–4.0 mm long including apex when flattened, 1.5–1.8 mm wide, oblong to oblong-ovate, widest immediately above the base, with sides nearly parallel or slightly concave to near the apex, where the labellum contracts abruptly to a short triangular apiculus; labellum apex and base recurved; margins with numerous dark purple cilia, from base to apex, toward the base cilia are shorter, and increase in length with increasing distance above the base and around the labellum apex cilia are turgid, non-flexuous, and up to 1 mm long; callus dark purple, lingulate from a broad base, occupying the width of the labellum at the base, then narrowing to an oblong-lingulate parallel-sided extension with a rounded apex situated a quarter of the labellum length from the apex, shallowly channelled at the base, callus surface papillate. Column 2 mm long not including column foot, 1.0 mm wide; column foot present, thin, falcate, pale, 400 μm long; wings unequally bilobed to 0.75 × of their length, upper lobe around 500 μm long and 100 μm wide, lingulate with a rounded apex, margins entire, slightly narrower than lower lobe; lower lobe narrow triangular, apex acuminate, margins shortly and closely ciliolate toward apex; anther versatile, 0.8 mm long, broad elliptic, with a filiform rostrum 0.4 mm long. Pollinarium comprising a massulate pollen mass adherent to a white, laciniate ring, a short hamulus and small globose viscidium 0.1 mm wide. Stigma ovate, 0.5 mm long by 0.5 mm wide.

Flowering: Summer, from late January to mid March.

Distribution and occurrence: ACT (Brindabella Ranges) and New South Wales. In New South Wales Genoplesium ectopum has been observed at one location on the Southern Tablelands, north-west of Goulburn.

In the Brindabella Ranges, G. ectopum grew in tall forest dominated by Eucalyptus radiata, with an open understorey of sparse shrubs; soil stony loam over shale; c. 800 m altitude. At the New South Wales locality, G. ectopum grew in Eucalyptus rossii woodland with scattered shrubs of Cassinia and occasional tussocks of Rytidosperma pallidum.
NSW subdivisions: ST

Threatened species: Commonwealth EPBC: Critically Endangered
AVH map***

Genoplesium ectopum can be distinguished from other Genoplesium species by the combination of 1) ciliate dorsal sepal margins, 2) sparsely ciliate petal margins, 3) ciliate labellum margins, 4) oblong-to oblong-ovate labellum with nearly parallel sides to close to the apex, which narrows abruptly to a short triangular apiculus, 5) labellum recurved at base and apex, 6) callus broad at base, occupying the labellum width, then narrowing to oblong-ligulate and extending three quarters the labellum length toward the apex.

The population growing north-west of Goulburn may represent a separate species closely related to Genoplesium ectopum sensu Copeland and Backhouse (2023).

Text by Jones DL (1999) Genoplesium ectopum (Orchidaceae), an endangered new species from the Australian Capital Territory.. The Orchadian 12(12): 570-572. with modification by Matthew Renner 19 July 2023. [Additions A.E. Orme, 3 November 2023.]
Taxon concept:

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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