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Phragmipedium caricinum (Lindley) Rolfe
in The Orchid Review, 4: 332 (1896).
Basionym :
Cypripedium caricinum Lindley in Paxton's Flower Garden, 1: 39 (1850).
Synonyms :
Selenipedium caricinum (Lindley) Reichenbach fil. in Xenia Orchidacea, 1: 3 (1854).
Selenipedium pearcei Reichenbach fil. in Flore des Serres, XVI: 73, pl. 9 (1867).
Paphiopedilum caricinum (Lindley) Stein in Stein's Orchideenbuch: 458 (1892).
Paphiopedilum karietinum hort. in B. Stein, Stein's Orchideenbuch: 473 (1892), lapsus calami.
Paphiopedilum caricinum (Lindley) Pfitzer in A. Engler, Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie, 19: 41 (1894).
Paphiopedium caricinum (Lindley) de Kerchove de Denterghem in Le Livre des Orchidées: 454 (1894).
Phragmopedilum caricinum (Lindley) Rolfe emendates Pfitzer in A. Engler, Das Pflanzenreich, IV. 50. Orchidaceae-Pleonandrae (Heft 12): 46 (1903).
Type(s) :
Etymology : The name of this species comes from the fact that the leaves look like those of sedge. Sedge are plants from the genus Carex, hence the name caricinum.
Plant : The different shoots of this plant grow close together. As a result the plants form large, compact clumps.
Leaves : The leaves are 30 to 50 cm long and up to 1.5 cm wide. The top side of the leaves is dark(er) green and the under side is light green.
Inflorescence : The inflorescence can carry 3 to 7 flowers and can grow up to a length of 50 cm.
Flower : The ventral sepal is shorter than the dorsal sepal, and completely covered with hair. The light-green staminode is almost hart-shaped, and at the basis covered with bristly brownish dark-red hairs, which become less from the centre on.
Habitat :
Distribution : Bolivia and Peru.
Flowering Season :
Chromosomes : 2n = 21, 22 (Karasawa, 1980 - as Phrag. pearcei).
History : The history of this species is very confusing because it was often mixed up with the closely related Phrag. pearcei. Phrag. caricinum was originally collected by Bridges in 1846 in Bolivia. He than gave these plants to Prof. Lindley for identification, who recognized it to be a new species and named it Cypripedium caricinum. The original herbarium-material concerning this species can still be found in the Lindley-herbarium at Kew Gardens.
Comments : Rauh and Senghas (1975) report that they found in Peru Phrag. caricinum and Phrag. boissierianum growing and flowering at the same location at the same time, without finding any hybrids.