Australian Tropical Rainforest Orchids

Papulipetalum nematopodum

Green Cowl Orchid

Papulipetalum nematopodum (F.Muell.) M.A.Clem. & D.L.Jones, Orchadian 13(11): 500 (2002).

Bulbophyllum nematopodum F.Muell., Fragm. 8: 30 (1873); Phyllorchis nematopoda (F.Muell.) Kuntze, Revis. gen. pl. 2: 677 (1891). Type: Ad sinum Rockinghamís Bay in silvis, J.Dallachy s.n. (holo MEL; iso K).


Occurs in north-eastern Queensland from Big Tableland to Paluma.

Altitude: 400-1200 m.


Epiphytic or lithophytic herb forming compact clumps. Pseudobulbs crowded, appressed to host, erect, ovoid to flask-shaped, 1.2-2 cm x 0.7-0.9 cm wide, dark green with narrow extended neck. Leaf solitary on pseudobulb, erect, apical, petiole 2-3 cm long, base not sheathing pseudobulb; lamina ovate to obovate, 7-13 cm x 1.5-2 cm wide, dark green, fleshy, shiny, apex obtuse to apiculate. Inflorescence axillary, single-flowered, 50-70 mm long, from the base of the pseudobulb; pedicel filiform, curved sharply near apex. Flowers solitary, resupinate, nodding, 8-10 mm x 10-12 mm, cream or pale green with red spots and pink to red labellum. Sepals and petals not spreading widely. Dorsal sepal hooded, ovate to oblong, 6-8 mm x 3-4 mm. Lateral sepals ovate, 8-10 mm x 4-5 mm, with irregular lines of red spots, bases fused to column foot. Petals minute, oblong, 2 mm x 0.8 mm, with distinct purple apical spot. Labellum hinged to column foot by small claw, oblong, 3 mm x 1.5 mm, obscurely 3-lobed; midlobe shallowly curved, fleshy, base deeply grooved. Column porrect, 2.5 mm long. Column foot 1.5 mm long, at right-angles to the column. Capsules dehiscent.


Occurs in rainforests and cloudforests, growing on trees and rocks on ridges where wind, fogs, mists and clouds are frequent.

Locally common.

Flowering period: September-November.

Name Changes

Until recently known as Bulbophyllum nematopodum.

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