Epidendrum piliferum Rchb.f. 1877 GROUP Pseudepidendrum SUBGROUP Paniculatum

Photo by © Eric Hunt


Plant and Inflorescence

Photos by © Gil Jy

Flower and plant in situ Panama

Photo by Wilfried Löderbusch


Drawing by © Jimenez, Hágsater & E.Santiago and The AMO Herbario Website

Part sun Warm to CoolMOSTLY Spring

Common Name The Prolific Epidendrum [refers to the many flowers]

Flower Size about 1" [about 2.5 cm]

Found in Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts at elevations of 1000 to 2500 meters as a medium to giant sized, cool to cold growing epiphyte or terrestrial with a simple, cane-like, terete, erect, straight stem carrying up to 23, all along the apical 2/3's of the stem, alternate, clearly marked veins, elliptic, acute, entire margined leaves that blooms in the spring on a terminal, occuring only once, thin, laterally compressed, with 1 to 3, prominent, tubular, acuminate bracts, paniculate, arising-nodding, densely, simultaneously 60 to 400 flowered inflorescence with variable in size, narrowly triangular, acuminate floral bracts and carrying non-fragrant flowers.

Recognized by the large plants, the numerous green and white flowers, a lip that is marked with purple, filiform petals and the apical lobules of the lip are long and acute.

"Epidendrum piliferum belongs to the GROUP Pseudepidendrum which is characterized by caespitose plants, canelike stems, acute to acuminate leaves, usually apical inflorescence, the filiform petals and the lip usually 3-lobed with 3 parallel fleshy keels, the apical lobe often bifurcate, the "bird-wing" type pollinia, and the SUBGROUP Paniculatum , which has green and white flowers, often marked with purple on the disc of the lip and apex of the column. The species is recognized by the tall plants up to 80" [2 meters], the arching-nodding inflorescence, with green and white flowers, relatively large sepals .5 to .68" [12.5 to 17 mm] long, the disc marked with 5 lines of purple dots. Epidendrum horichii Hágsater from Costa Rica has shorter, generally epiphytic plants, with shorter, narrower leaves 1.4 to 6" [3.5 to 15 cm] long, with very similar flowers in shape and color, but smaller sepals .28 to .4" [7 to 10 mm] long. Epidendrum veroscriptum Hágsater has similar flowers, but the lip is generally marked with purple dots in a semi circle around the disc, the ovary is scarcely furfuraceous, and ranges from central Mexico to Nicaragua." Hagsater 2008


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Repert. Sp. Nov. Regni. Veg. Beih. 19: 42. Costa Rica Schlechter 1923; Repert. Sp. Nov. Regni. Veg. Beih. 19: 124. Costa Rica Schlechter 1923; Repert. Sp. Nov. Regni. Veg. Beih. 19: 216. Costa Rica Schlechter 1923; Icones Orchidacearum 3 Plate 334 Hagsater & Sanchez 1999 see recognition section; Manual de las Plantas de Costa Rica Vol 3 Hammel, Grayum, Herrera and Zamora 2003; Vanishing Beauty, Native Costa Rican Orchids Vol 1 Pupulin 2005 photo ok; Icones Orchidacearum Vol 11 Plate 1112 Hagsater & Sanchez 2008 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum Vol 11 Plate 1133 Hagsater & Sanchez 2008 see recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum Vol 11 Plate 1160 Hagsater & Sanchez 2008 drawing fide; Icones Orchidacearum Vol 11 Plate 1185 Hagsater & Sanchez 2008 see recognition section; Orchids of Costa Rica Vol 3 Morales 2009 photo fide; Icones Orchidacearum 13 Plate 1379 Hagsater & Dodson 2010 See Recognition section; Icones Orchidacearum 14 Plate 1467 Hagsater & Sanchez 2013 see recognition section; Orchids of the Darien Gap Kolanowska 2014 drawing fide; Orquideas, Tesoro de Colombia Vol 2 Ortiz & Uribe 2017 photo ok; Orchid Genera and Species in Guatemala Archila, Szlachchetko, Chiron, Lipinska, Mystkowska and Bertolini 2018; Lankesteriana 19(1). 31 - 55 2019 photo fide