Monday, 2 September 2013

Disa Orchids


The Disa genus of orchids consists of 169 terrestrial orchid species native to tropical and South Africa, Madagascar and along the Western Indian Ocean. Its members are primarily from South Africa, and it is most noted for the species Disa uniflora, a spectacular red orchid also known as "The Pride of Table Mountain." However, Disa bracteata also occurs near Perth, Australia. They were named after Disa, the heroine of a Swedish legend, by the botanist Carl Peter Thunberg. The plants grow from a fleshy tuberous root which is mostly used for the artificial sweetener maltodextrins and may attain a height of 90 cm. The flowers grow in racemes or solitary. The petals and the lip are small. The lip is nonresupinate, so the flower appears upside down compared to most orchids. The flowers consist essentially of the sepals. The flowers are colored in the whole range of red.

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