Bhakta Bahadur Raskoti
and Rita Ale
IUCN Nepal, Kupondole, Lalitpur, Nepal;
Bank Street graduate School of Education, New York, USA; *Corresponding
author, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nervilia makinnoni Duthie and Nervilia plicata (Andrews) Schltr. (Orchidaceae) are reported as new records to Nepal. Detail
description, illustrations and relevant notes are provided.
Key words: conservation status, herbarium, orchids, phenology.
The genus Nervilia Comm. ex Gaudich is one of the widespread
genera of the family Orchidaceae. It has about 80 species in the
world distributed in tropical Africa, Madagascar, Asia, The Malay
Archipelago, The Pacific Island and North Australia (Pearce
and Cribb 2002).
The genus Nervilia is characterized as globose or ovoid
and fleshy tuber having single leaf that grows after flower
withered, leaf may be cordate, orbicular, or kidney-shaped with
a stalk. Flower with thin pedicel, sepals and petals similar,
narrowly long, open, half open or closed; labellum suberect,
base without spur, slender column.
Nepal harbors 377 species of orchids (Orchidaceae) belonging
to 100 genera (Rajbhandari and Dahal 2004). The genus Nervilia
comprises 5 species in Nepal distributed mostly at altitudes of 400-
1000 m asl in litter-covered loose soil. The previously recorded
species were N. aragoana Gaudich, N. crociformis (Zollinger &
Morritzi) Seidenf., N. falcata (King & Pantl.) Schltr., N. gammieana
(Hook. f.) Schltr. and N. microglossa (Hook. f.) Schltr. (Banerji 1978;
Press et al. 2000; Subedi 2002; Rajbhandari and Dahal 2004).
In this study Nervilia makinnoni Duthie and Nervilia plicata
(Andrews) Schltr. are reported as new records to Nepal. N. plicata
is distributed in India, Myanmar, Thailand, China, Laos, Vietnam,
Malaysia, The Philippines and Australia (Pearce and Cribb 2002);
whereas, N. mackinnonii is distributed in India (Duthie 1970). These
two species are not previously recorded from Nepal (Hara et al.
1978; Banerji and Pradhan 1984; Press et al. 2000; DPR 2001;
Rajbhandari and Dahal 2004). There is no record of the specimens
of these two species in the National Herbarium, Kathmandu (KATH)
and Tribhuvan University Central Herbarium (TUCH). The
specimens of N. mackinnonii and N. plicata have been collected
by the first author from the Kathmandu valley and Arghakhanchi
district, respectively and deposited at TUCH.
Nervilia mackinnonii (Duthie) Schltr. Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 45: 402 (1911).
mackinnonii Duthie J. Asiat. Soc. Bengal, Pt. 2, Nat. Hist.
71(2): 43 (1903).
Tuber globose, 1 cm in diameter. Leaf petiole 6 cm long, arising
after flowering, petiole 7 cm, heptagonal, 2.5-4.5 × 3.7-5 cm, margin
entire, base cordate, all lobes rounded except terminal acute lobes.
Flower scape 10 cm long, sheathed; raceme with a pedicellate,
solitary flower; floral bracts lanceolate, acute. Flowers 1.8 cm across,
spreading, pale yellow, lip white tinged with purple. Sepals linear-
lanceolate, 2 cm long, apex acuminate. Petals linear-lanceolate, 2
cm long, apex acute; labellum oblong, 1.5 cm long, 3-lobed near
middle, lateral lobes erect, acute; midlobe narrowly oblong, apex
sub-acute; column slender, 7 mm. Anthers broad, margins of the
cells toothed. Pollinia 2, clavate. Ovary 4 mm, cylindrical.
Phenology: Flowering in May and fruiting in June.
Habit and habitat: Terrestrial on litter-covered loose soil, in full
shade. Occurs in the subtropical forest at altitudes of 1700 m asl.
Specimens examined: Central Nepal: Bagmati Zone, Kathmandu District,
Nagarjun forest, 1700 m asl, May 15, 2007, B.B. Raskoti 196 (TUCH).
Conservation status: Threatened due to habitat destruction.
Note: This species is closely related to Nervilia macroglossa
but the leaves are distinctly lobed, the flowers are smaller and
spreading, the lateral lobes of the lip are distinct.
(Andrews) Schltr. Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 45: 403 (1911).
Andrews Bot. Repos. 5: t. 321 (1803).
Tuber globose, 10 mm in diameter. Leaf petiole 1.5-3 cm;
growing after flowering; orbicular-cordate, 7.5-11 × 10-13 cm,
interveinal areas and margin hirsute, base cordate, margin entire,
apex acute. Flower scape 12 cm tall, lower part with tubular sheaths;
raceme 2-3 flowers. Flowers half opened, brownish yellow with
Nervilia makinnoni Duthie. and Nervilia plicata (Andrews)
Schltr. (Orchidaceae): new records for flora of Nepal
Botanica Orientalis – Journal of Plant Science (2009) 6: 109–110 ISSN 1726-6858
© 2009 Central Department of Botany, Tribhuvan University
purplish red veins. Sepals and petals subequal, linear-oblong, 2
cm, apex acuminate; labellum concave, subrhombic, 2 cm long,
glabrous, near middle obscurely 3-lobed; lateral lobes erect, apex
obtuse; mid-lobe ovate, apex emarginated; column 10 mm, apex
clavate. Anthers broad. Ovary 6 mm, elliptic, ridged, glabrous.
Phenology: Flowering in May and fruiting in June.
Habit and habitat: Terrestrial on humus-rich damp places, in
full shade. Occurs in the tropical forest at 900-1000 m asl.
Specimens examined: Central Nepal (Lumbini Zone,
Pokharathok-9, Arghakhanchi at altitudes of 600-1000 meters); May
27, 2007; Raskoti 204 (TUCH).
Conservation status: Threatened due to over grazing.
Note: This species is related to Nervilia hookeriana but it
differs in having lip shorter than sepals, lacking distinct lateral
lobes, and leaves with coarse hairs on both sides.
The authors are thankful to the curators of the National Herbarium
and Plant Laboratories (KATH) and Tribhuvan University Central
Herbarium (TUCH) for allowing us to examine herbarium specimens.
© 2009 Central Department of Botany, Tribhuvan University, Botanica Orientalis (2009) 6: 109-110
110 B. B. Raskoti and R. Ale / Nervilia makinnoni. and Nervilia plicata
Fig. 1. i. Nervilia mackinnonii (Duthie) Schltr. A. habit; B. plant bearing flower; C, flower (spread out); D. labellum (front view); E. labellum
(side view); F. column and ovary; G. anther; H. pollinia. ii. Nervilia plicata (Andrews) Schltr. A. habit; B. plant bearing flower; C, flower
(spread out); D. labellum; E. anther.
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