Brachypeza archytas

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Sage Orchid
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Orchidaceae
Subfamily: Epidendroideae
Tribe: Vandeae
Subtribe: Aeridinae
Genus: Brachypeza
Species: B. archytas
Binomial name
Brachypeza archytas
(Ridl.) Garay (1972)
  • Saccolabium archytas Ridl. (1891)
  • Sarcochilus archytas (Ridl.) Schltr. (1913)

Brachypeza archytas, commonly known as the Sage Orchid, is an epiphytic orchid.[1] It is endemic to Christmas Island,[2] an Australian territory in the north-eastern Indian Ocean. Its specific epithet honours the Greek philosopher Archytas.[3]


The stems of the orchid are obscured by aerial roots. It has 4 or 5 lorate leaves, 100–220 mm long and 16–26 mm wide, unequally bilobed, forming a fan. The inflorescence is 150–350 mm long, with a long, angled peduncle and a rachis with many densely spaced, small (8–10 mm) white flowers.[3]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

Found only on Christmas Island, the orchid is relatively common, especially in rainforest on the island’s lower terraces where it is often found low down on large tree trunks, such as those of Tristiropsis acutangula and Gyrocarpus americanus.[3]



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