African Plant Database

Disa cryptantha Summerh.
Protologue : Kew Bull. 17: 537 (1964)
Information on the genus : Disa
Status for TA : accepted (present)
Ecology and distribution
Trop. Afr.
Biology : Terrestrial herb 30-60 cm tall; tubers ovoid, 1,5-3x1 cm, shortly tomentose or almost glabrous; sterile stem 3-8 cm long with several red-spotted overlapping sheaths and 1-2 leaves as apex, linear, c. 15x0,5 cm; flowering stem 30-60 cm tall, slender, covered with 9-10 imbricate leaves, lanceolate, 7x1 cm, acuminate, upper ones bract-like; inflorescence 7-10 cm long, 2 cm Ø, densely 15-30-flowered; flowers wine-red or flesh-coloured, almost hidden by the long bracts; pedicel and ovary c. 13 mm long; dorsal sepal concave, elliptic-ovate, 3-6x3-4 mm with pendent spur 3-5 mm long, filiform, obtuse; lateral sepals obliquely-oblong, 5-7x3-4 mm, obtuse; petals obovate, 4-6x2-5 mm, unequally 2-lobed at apex, anterior lobe broad and rounded, posterior lobe angular and acute, tooth-like, much smaller than anterior lobe; lip linear, acute, pendent, 4-6x0,5 mm.
Ecology : (Seasonally) wet places; marshy or damp grassland; swampy meadows along rivers; 950-1800 m alt.
  Easily confused with D. celata.
  Probably used as chikanda (Golding in Sabonet News 6/2: 95, 2001).
  In Malawi ? (not in I. la Croix & al., Orchids Malawi, 1991).

Bibliography for Tropical Africa :
  • Exell, A. & Wild, H. (1995). Flora Zambesiaca: Mozambique, Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland, Bechuanaland Protectorate. London Kew 11[1]: 166
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Record n°43384
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