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Marbled jewel orchids
Anoectochilus setaceus.jpg
Anoectochilus setaceus
1844 iIllustration[1]
Scientific classification

Type species
Anoectochilus setaceus

See text.

Anoectochilus, commonly known as marbled jewel orchids[3] or filigree orchids,[4] is a genus of about fifty species in the orchid family Orchidaceae. They are terrestrial herbs with a creeping rhizome, an upright flowering stem and dark coloured leaves with contrasting veins. The flowers are relatively large and have a large labellum, markedly different from the sepals and petals.


Orchids in the genus Anoectochilus are terrestrial, perennial, deciduous, sympodial herbs with a creeping, above-ground rhizome with wiry roots that look woolly. The leaves are arranged in a rosette and are relatively broad and thin. They are dark green or brownish purple and have a contrasting network of silvery or reddish veins. The flowers are relatively large, hairy, velvety, resupinate and arranged in a short spike. The dorsal sepal and petals overlap to form a hood over the column with the lateral sepals spreading apart from each other. The labellum is relatively large with two sections - an upper "epichile" and lower "hypochile" separated by a narrow section. The hypochile has a cylinder-shaped spur containing two large glands and is joined to the epichile with a "claw" that has spreading teeth or a long fringe. The fruit is a hairy capsule containing a large number of winged seeds.[3][4][5][6]

Taxonomy and naming[edit]

The genus Anoectochilus was first formally described in 1825 by Carl Ludwig Blume and Anoectochilus setaceus was the first species he described, hence it is the type species.[7] The genus name is derived from the Ancient Greek words anoiktos (ἀνοικτός) meaning "opened" and cheilos (χεῖλος) meaning "lip".[8]


Orchids in this genus range from the Himalayas to south China, Southeast Asia, Australia, New Guinea, Melanesia and Hawaii,[9] found in moist areas with deep shade.[3][4]

List of species[edit]

The following is a list of species recognised by the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families as at May 2018:[2]


  1. ^ Walter Hood Fitch (1817-1892) del. Swan sc. William Jackson Hooker (1785—1865) ed. - "Curtis's botanical magazine" vol. 70 tab. 4123
  2. ^ a b "Anoectochilus". World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (WCSP). Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  3. ^ a b c Jones, David L. (2006). A complete guide to native orchids of Australia including the island territories. Frenchs Forest, N.S.W.: New Holland. p. 346. ISBN 1877069124.
  4. ^ a b c "Anoectochilus". Australian National Botanic Gardens. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
  5. ^ "Anoectochilus". Flora of China. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
  6. ^ "Genus: Anoectochilus". North American Orchid Conservation Center. Retrieved 29 August 2018.
  7. ^ "Anoectochilus setaceus". World Checklist of Selected Plant Families (WCSP). Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  8. ^ Backer, C.A. (1936). Verklarend woordenboek der wetenschappelijke namen van de in Nederland en Nederlandsch-Indië in het wild groeiende en in tuinen en parken gekweekte varens en hoogere planten (Edition Nicoline van der Sijs).
  9. ^ Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  10. ^ "New plant and animal species found in Vietnam" Archived October 13, 2007, at the Wayback Machine CNN. September 27, 2007.
  • Ormerod Paul (2005). "Notulae Goodyerinae (II)". Taiwania. 50 (1): 1–10.

External links[edit]