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Flora of Taiwan | Family List | Orchidaceae

Bulbophyllum Thou.


Epiphytic perennial herbs. Rhizomes creeping, long or short and obscure between pseudobulbs. Pseudobulbs remote or closely aggregated, sometimes totally reduced and leaves arising from rhizome. Leaves solitary, ovate, oblong or linear, usually fleshy, coriaceous. Scapes from base of pseudobulb, rarely from rhizome. Flowers solitary, umbellate or racemose; bracts minute; sepals subequal, or dorsal one much shorter, lateral ones adnate to foot of column; petals usually much smaller than dorsal sepal; lip narrowed at base and hinged to foot of column, mobile, usually very small and strongly recurved; column very short, often slightly winged or with 2 aristate stylids at top, produced into a distinct foot at base; anther terminal, incumbent, 2-celled; pollinia 2 or 4, waxy, globose or ellipsoid, free or connected by viscid material but without caudicles; stigma entire, concave. Capsules fusiform.

Approximately 2,000 species, tropical and subtropical, chiefly in Asia, a few in Africa and Australia; 21 species in Taiwan.


1 Pseudobulbs absent; leaves and scapes arising from rhizomes.   (2)
+ Pseudobulbs present; leaves at apex of pseudobulbs; scapes arising from base of pseudobulbs.   (5)
2 (1) Rhizomes, erect or ascending, not firmly creeping on substrate; leaves closely arranged on rhizome   Bulbophyllum riyanum
+ Rhizome firmly prostrate on substrate; leaves remotely arranged on rhizomes.   (3)
3 (2) Flowers usually solitary; sepals 8-16 mm long; lip with 2 raised ridges near base.   Bulbophyllum drymoglossum
+ Flowers 2 or 3; sepals less than 4 mm long; lip without distinct ridges near base.   (4)
4 (3) Leaves elliptic, 1-2 cm long; flowers 2 or 3; lip oblong, not clawed at base.   Bulbophyllum aureolabellum
+ Leaves elliptic-orbicular, less than 1 cm long; flowers usually 2; lip ovate-triangular, with a distinct long claw at base.   Bulbophyllum tokioi
5 (1) Inflorescence a raceme, 5-15 cm long; flowers 6 or more, loosely arranged.   Bulbophyllum insulsum
+ Inflorescence with one to many flowers, flowers solitary, umbellate or subumbellate, rarely a short condensed raceme less than 2 cm long.   (6)
6 (5) Dorsal sepal as long as lateral sepals or nearly so.   (7)
+ Dorsal sepal less than 2/3 length of lateral sepals.   (9)
7 (6) Rhizome distinct; pseudobulbs nearly cylindrical; leaves 6-18 cm long.   Bulbophyllum affine
+ Rhizome very short or obscure; pseudobulbs ovoid to nearly globose; leaves less than 10 cm long.   (8)
8 (7) Flowers solitary; sepals more than 2 cm long.   Bulbophyllum pectinatum
+ Flowers more than 5, in a short compact raceme appearing like a capitate umbel; sepals ca. 4 mm long.   Bulbophyllum rubrolabellum
9 (6) Inflorescences with 6 or more flowers in a short raceme.   Bulbophyllum taiwanense
+ Inflorescences with less than 6 flowers in a short umbel-like raceme, or with many flowers in umbel.   (10)
10 (9) Dorsal sepal and petals entire, not ciliate.   (11)
+ Dorsal sepals and petals varyingly ciliate.   (14)
11 (10) Leaves 2-4 cm wide; pseudobulbs usually smooth.   Bulbophyllum macraei
+ Leaves less than 2 cm wide; pseudobulbs sulcate or tessellate at maturity.   (12)
12 (11) Pseudobulbs 2-2.5 cm long; leaves 8-12 cm long; lateral sepals usually free.   Bulbophyllum umbellatum
+ Pseudobulbs less than 1.5 cm long; leaves less than 7 cm long; lateral sepals usually connate for some length.   (13)
13 (12) Leaves linear, apex acute or acuminate; lip with a globose thickening at apex.   Bulbophyllum japonicum
+ Leaves oblong, apex obtuse or retuse; lip not as above   Bulbophyllum retusiusculum
14 (10) Rhizomes distinct, 2-3 mm in diam.; pseudobulbs 1.5-4 cm long, 1-2.5 cm wide; leaves 5-12 cm long, 1.5-2.5 cm wide.   (15)
+ Rhizomes inconspicuous or distinct, less than 2 mm in diam.; pseudobulbs less than 1 cm wide; leaves 2-10 cm long, less than 1.5 cm wide.   (16)
15 (14) Flowers orange yellow to reddish, with dark purple streaks and spots; dorsal sepal 1.5-2.4 cm long, 1-1.5 cm wide; lip short hirsute on laterally near base   Bulbophyllum wightii
+ Flowers greenish yellow, with minute reddish brown spots; dorsal sepal 1-1.3 cm long, 0.7-0.8 cm wide; lip glabrous throughout.   Bulbophyllum omerandrum
16 (14) Inflorescence a short raceme, 5-10 mm long; lateral sepals free, divergent.   Bulbophyllum taiwanense
+ Inflorescence an umbel of few to many flowers, or a raceme less than 3 mm long; lateral sepals partly connate along edges.   (17)
17 (16) Rhizomes less than 1 mm in diam.; flowers reddish, sepals and petals white ciliate, lateral sepals 7-9 mm long   Bulbophyllum albociliatum
+ Rhizomes 1-2 mm in diam.; flowers not as above; lateral sepals more than 12 mm long.   (18)
18 (17) Rhizomes distinct; pseudobulbs 3-6 cm apart; leaves 4-10 cm long; flowers pale yellow, with dark red continuous or broken lines   Bulbophyllum melanoglossum
+ Rhizomes short or obscure; Pseudobulbs usually less than 1.5 cm apart; leaves usually less than 6 cm long; flower not colored as above.   (19)
19 (18) Scape 14-16 cm long; with 12-16 flowers; lateral sepals slender, 3-4 cm long, 2 mm wide; petals obtuse to rounded at apex.   Bulbophyllum setaceum
+ Scape usually less than 10 cm long, with 4-10 flowers; lateral sepals 1.5-4 cm long, more than 3 mm wide at base; petals acute to acuminate.   (20)
20 (19) Dorsal sepal not caudate at apex; lateral sepals less than 2 cm long, distinctly ciliate along margin.   Bulbophyllum electrinum
+ Dorsal sepal distinctly caudate at apex; lateral sepals longer than 2.3 cm, not ciliate.   (21)
21 (20) Scape 4-6 cm long; flower pale orange to yellowish; lateral sepals tinged with vermilion near base; lip reddish.   Bulbophyllum hirundinis
+ Scape 7-10 cm long; flowers pale green to yellow; lateral sepals totally yellow; lip yellowish white.   Bulbophyllum pectenveneris

  • List of lower taxa


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