Disa erubescens Rendle
subsp. erubescens

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Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens

Picture: Margaret Westrop
Zomba Plateau, Malawi

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Synonyms: Disa erubescens Rendle var. leucantha Schltr.
Common names:
Status: Native
Terrestrial herb, 40-90 cm tall. Leaves on a separate sterile shoot, 2-3, erect, linear, up to 30 cm long, folded along the length. Leaves along the fertile shoot, lanceolate, 3-8 cm long, sheathing except for the apices. Inflorescence 5-13 cm long, laxly 3-6-flowered with lanceolate bracts, c. 3 cm long. Flowers bright orange-red with the inside of the hood and upper petal lobes orange, spotted red. Dorsal sepal erect, spathulate, c. 3 cm long, spur ascending, slender, 8-16 mm long. Lateral sepals spreading, c. 2.5 cm long. Petals 2-lobed, posterior lobe diverging upwards with a S-shaped curve inside the hood. Lip pendent, linear, 9-20 mm long.
Type location:
Notes: See subsp. carsonii for comparison. Also compare Disa ornithantha.
Derivation of specific name: erubescens: reddening, rose
Habitat: Wet montane grassland and seepage zones.
Altitude range: 1800 - 2200 m
Flowering time:Jan - Mar
Worldwide distribution: Nigeria, Cameroon, DRC Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Zambian distribution (Flora Zambesiaca): N,W
Zambian distribution (Provinces): Nw,C
Growth form(s): Terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Baumann, G. (2005). Photographic Guide to Wildflowers of Malawi Wildlife and Environmental Society of Malawi Pages 224 - 225. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 321. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 22.

Fibeck, W. & Dare, M. (1993). Terrestrial Orchids in Zimbabwe. Excelsa 16 Page 56.

La Croix, I. & Cribb, P.J. (1995). Orchidaceae (Part 1) Flora Zambesiaca 11(1) Pages 172 - 173. (Includes a picture).

La Croix, I. et al. (1991). Orchids of Malawi A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam Pages 117 - 118. (Includes a picture).

Linder, H.P. (1981). Taxonomic studies in the Disinae (Orchidaceae): IV A revision of Disa Berg. sect. Micranthae Lindl. Bulletin du Jardin Botanique National de Belgique 51(3/4) Pages 335 - 339. (Includes a picture).

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 95.

Moriarty, A. (1975). Wild Flowers of Malawi Purnell & sons Cape Town. Pages 47 - 48. as Disa erubescens (Includes a picture).

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 119.

Stewart, J. & Campbell, B. (1996). Orchids of Kenya Timber Press Inc, Portland Oregon, USA ISBN0-88192-357-5 Page 104. as Disa erubescens (Includes a picture).

Williamson, G. (1977). The Orchids of South Central Africa J.M. Dent & Sons Ltd., London. Pages 78 - 79. (Includes a picture).

Other sources of information about Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens
Flora of Malawi: Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens
Flora of Mozambique: Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens
Flora of Zimbabwe: Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Disa erubescens
African Plant Database: Disa erubescens
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Disa erubescens
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Disa erubescens
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Disa erubescens
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Disa erubescens
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Disa erubescens
JSTOR Plant Science: Disa erubescens
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Disa erubescens
Plants of the World Online: Disa erubescens
Tropicos: Disa erubescens
Wikipedia: Disa erubescens

Copyright: Mike Bingham, Annette Willemen, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Mark Hyde, 2011-24

Bingham, M.G., Willemen, A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. and Hyde, M.A. (2024). Flora of Zambia: Species information: Disa erubescens subsp. erubescens.
https://www.zambiaflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=117320, retrieved 5 March 2024

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