Thelychiton tarberi— King Orchid, Rock Lily, Tar-Beri—ORCHIDACEAE.

Thelychiton tarberi

Link to Images on Flickr.

Habitat—Grows on trees and rocks in rainforest and sclerophyll forest and in exposed situations.

Distribution— North from the Hawkesbury River in New South Wales into Queensland.

Description— Epilith or epiphyte with stems erect to spreading, succulent, cylindrical, thickest just below the middle and tapering slightly towards each end, rooting only at base, 30 to 100 cm long, 20 to 40 mm diam., with 2 to 5 leaves at apex; roots smooth, some creeping but others growing upwards as 'basket roots'.

Local occurrences

Barrington Tops National Park, Boorganna Nature Reserve, Bulahdelah State Forest, Ellenborough Falls, Middle Brother National Park, Stephen Street Reserve, Talawahl Nature Reserve, Talawahl State Conservation Area, Tapin Tops National Park, Woko National Park and Zamia Place Reserve.

Leaves.— Spreading to erect, elliptic to oblong, 18 to 25 cm long, 38 to 65 mm wide, conduplicate, thickly leathery, smooth.

Thelychiton tarberi
Thelychiton tarberi

Inflorescence.— 30 to 60 cm long, 90 to 200-flowered. Sepals and lateral petals white to cream; dorsal sepal 16 to 28 mm long, 3 to 5 mm wide; labellum white to cream, finely dotted and striped with dark purple, 8 to 10 mm long, 7 to 8 mm wide. Column 3 to 4 mm long; column foot 4 to 6 mm long.

Flowering.—August to October.