Lepanthes niphas Luer & R.Escobar 1991

SUBGENUS Lepanthes SECTION Lepanthes SUBSECTION Breves Luer SERIES Breves Luer 1996

Photo by Ecuagenera Ecuador OrchidWebsite

TYPE Drawing

TYPE Drawing by Carl Luer

Common Name The Snowflake Lepanthes [refers to the tiny crystaline white flowers]

Flower Size .16" [4mm]

Found in Antioquia and Risaralda departments of Colombia at elevations around 2100 as a mini-miniature sized cold growing epiphyte with erect, slender ramicauls enveloped by 7 to 8 microscopically cilate lepanthiform sheaths and carrying a single apical erect, coriaceous, narrowly ovate, acute, cuneate below into the petiollate base leaf that blooms in the spring on a slender, erect, congested, distichous, .8 to 1.4" [2 to 3.5 cm] long including the .2 to .8" [5 to 20 mm] long peduncle, successively many flowered inflorescence arising on the back of the leaf and has spiculate floral bracts.

Lepanthes niphas resembles the Ecuadorian species, Lepanthes equus-frisiae, Lepanthes pelorostele , L scrotifera and L rigidigitata, the Colombian species L abortiva, L eros, L isoceles, L micellilabia and L vargasii and the Costa Rican L posthon, L spadariae and L vestgialis.


References W3 Tropicos, Kew Monocot list , IPNI ; Orquideologia Vol 18 #1 1991 Drawing fide; Icones Pleurothallidinarum Vol XXXII Luer 2012 drawing fide; Lankesteriana 17: 227 Moreno Vieira & Karremans 2017 drawing/photo fide; Orchids, A Colombian Treasure Vol 3 Ortiz & Uribe 2019 drawing/photo fide;