Leafless Tongue-orchid  |  

Cryptostylis hunteriana

Status: Vulnerable on the EPBC Act list

The Leafless Tongue-orchid is a small perennial terrestrial orchid that lacks leaves and receives its nourishment from dead organic matter in partnership with a mycorrhizal fungus. The flowering stem is yellow in colour, 10-45 cm long and has 5-10 flowers. The flowers are approximately 2.5-3.5 cm long, with 2.2 cm long linear reflexed sepals and petals. Flowers in the Cryptostylis genus have a large flamboyant labellum shaped like a tongue, slipper or bonnet. The labellum of the Leafless Tongue-orchid is erect, dark red, with a hairy upper surface and a wide central black band that becomes four black lines. Most of the labellum’s upper surface is covered with dense glandular hairs.

Government evidence of impact of climate change:

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  • Australian Government, Conservation Advice, Cryptostylis hunteriana

    Frequent or inappropriate fire regimes; resulting in significant alteration of the site ecology will also effect populations.