Glossodia minor

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Small Waxlip Orchid
Waxlip Orchid Challenger Track.jpg
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, Australia
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Orchidaceae
Subfamily: Orchidoideae
Tribe: Diurideae
Subtribe: Caladeniinae
Genus: Glossodia
Species: G. minor
Binomial name
Glossodia minor

Glossodia minor, the Small Waxlip Orchid is a small terrestrial orchid, found in eastern Australia. Usually found near the coast, often in heathland growing on sandstone based soils. It may grow from 5 to 16 cm (2 to 6.5 in) tall. One or two flowers appear in winter or spring. They are rarely white, but more often a pink, violet, rosy pink or bluish purple. The single leaf is parallel to the ground, 2 to 4 cm (1 to 1.5 in) long, and broad lanceolate in shape. The leaf and stem are noticeably hairy.[1] This plant first appeared in scientific literature in 1810, in the Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae authored by the prolific Scottish botanist, Robert Brown.[2]

Glossodia minor can be distinguished from the waxlip orchid (Glossodia major) by its smaller flowers. The latter species has a white base to the labellum.[3]

Glossodia minor is found along the eastern coastline of Australia in Queensland and New South Wales, where it reaches as far west as Temora.[4] It is also found in Victoria west to Marlo.[3]

the single prostrate leaf, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park


  1. ^ Les Robinson - Field Guide to the Native Plants of Sydney, ISBN 978-0-7318-1211-0 page 250
  2. ^ "Glossodia minor R.Br.". Australian Plant Name Index (APNI), IBIS database. Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research, Australian Government. 
  3. ^ a b Bishop, Anthony (2000). Field guide to the orchids of New South Wales and Victoria. UNSW Press. p. 163. ISBN 0-86840-706-2. 
  4. ^ P. Bernhardt. "New South Wales Flora Online: Glossodia minor". Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust, Sydney, Australia. 

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