Orthochilus mechowii Rchb. f.

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Orthochilus mechowii

Photo: Bart Wursten
Honde Valley Rd near Inyanga turn off.

Orthochilus mechowii

Photo: Bart Wursten
Honde Valley Rd near Inyanga turn off.

Orthochilus mechowii

Photo: Neil Crouch
Eland Sanctuary, Chimanimani

Orthochilus mechowii

Photo: Bart Wursten
Along road from Penhalonga before turn-off to Stapleford.

Orthochilus mechowii

Photo: Bart Wursten
Along road from Penhalonga before turn-off to Stapleford.

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Synonyms: Eulophia ?milanjiana Rendle
Eulophia mechowii (Rchb. f.) Durand & Schinz
Eulophia zeyheri Hook. f.
Common names: Banana orchid (English)
Status: Native
Robust terrestrial, up to 70 cm. Leaves long and narrow, usually just developing or absent at the time of flowering. Inflorescence dense and short with many flowers up to 7 cm in diameter, lemon yellow with a deep yellow-orange lip and a purple-brown throat.
Notes: Formerly known as E. welwitschii, which is now considered to be a closely related species occurring in Zambia and Angola.
Derivation of specific name: mechowii: named after Major Friedrich Wilhelm Alexandre von Mechow (1831-1890), Prussian officer, plant collector and explorer who led several expeditions to Angola between 1873 and 1882.
Habitat: A species of hillsides in miombo and wooded grassland, bracken scrub along forest edges, and occasionally along roadsides.
Altitude range: Up to 1950 m
Flowering time:Nov - Jan
Worldwide distribution: Widespread from Nigeria to Sudan and South to South Africa
Malawi distribution: N,C,S
Growth form(s): Terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Ball, J.S. (2009). Terrestrial African Orchids, A Selected Review. Pages 136 - 137. (Includes a picture).

Baumann, G. (2005). Photographic Guide to Wildflowers of Malawi Wildlife and Environmental Society of Malawi Pages 236 - 237. as Eulophia zeyheri (Includes a picture).

Cribb, P.J. (1989). Orchidaceae (Part 3) Flora of Tropical East Africa Pages 454 - 455. as Eulophia zeyheri

Fibeck, W. & Dare, M. (1993). Terrestrial Orchids in Zimbabwe. Excelsa 16 Page 62. as Eulophia zeyheri

Grosvenor, R.K. (1976). A list of orchids indigenous in Rhodesia. Excelsa 6 Page 82. as Eulophia zeyheri

La Croix, I. & Cribb, P.J. (1998). Orchidaceae (Part 2) Flora Zambesiaca 11(2) Pages 509 - 510. as Eulophia zeyheri

La Croix, I. et al. (1991). Orchids of Malawi A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam Pages 307 - 308. as Eulophia zeyheri (Includes a picture).

La Croix, I.F. & La Croix T.M. (1983). Orchids of Bvumbwe The Society of Malawi Journal 36(2) Page 17. as Eulophia zeyheri

Linder, H.P. & Kurzweil, H. (1999). Orchids of Southern Africa A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam, the Netherlands ISBN 90-5410-445-7 Pages 388 - 389. as Eulophia welwitschii (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 96. As Eulophia zeyheri

Martos, F., Johnson, S.D., Peter, C.I & Bytebier, B. (2014). A molecular phylogeny reveals paraphyly of the large genus Eulophia (Orchidaceae): A case for the reinstatement of Orthochilus Taxon 63(1) Page 19.

McMurtry, D., Grobler, L., Grobler, J. & Burns, S. (2008). Field Guide to the ORCHIDS of Northern South Africa and Swaziland Umdaus Press, PO Box 11059 Hatfield 0028 South Africa Pages 330 - 331. as Eulophia zeyheri (Includes a picture).

Moriarty, A. (1975). Wild Flowers of Malawi Purnell & sons Cape Town. Pages 43 - 44. as Eulophia zeyheri (Includes a picture).

Plowes, D.C.H. & Drummond, R.B. (1990). Wild Flowers of Zimbabwe. Revised edition. Longman, Zimbabwe. No. 34, plate 54 as Eulophia zeyheri

Stewart, J. & Campbell, B. (1996). Orchids of Kenya Timber Press Inc, Portland Oregon, USA ISBN0-88192-357-5 Page 127. as Eulophia zeyheri (Includes a picture).

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 136. as Eulophia zeyheri

Wursten, B., Timberlake, J. & Darbyshire, I. (2017). The Chimanimani Mountains: an updated checklist. Kirkia 19(1) Page 84.

Other sources of information about Orthochilus mechowii:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Orthochilus mechowii
Flora of Mozambique: Orthochilus mechowii
Flora of Zimbabwe: Orthochilus mechowii

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Malawi: Species information: Orthochilus mechowii.
https://www.malawiflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=119700, retrieved 15 July 2024

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