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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Monocots
Ordo: Asparagales

Familia: Orchidaceae
Subfamilia: Epidendroideae
Tribus: Collabieae
Genus: Acanthophippium
Overview of species (13)

A. bicolor – A. chrysoglossum – A. curtisii – A. eburneum – A. gougahensis – A. javanicum – A. lilacinum – A. mantinianum – A. parviflorum – A. pictum – A. splendidum – A. striatum – A. sylhetense

Acanthophippium Blume, Bijdr.: 353 (1825)

Type species: Acanthophippium javanicum Blume, Bijdr.: 354 (1825)


Acanthephippium Blume Gen. Pl. 200. (1837) orth. var.
Tainiopsis Hayata, Icon. Pl. Formosan. 4: 63 (1914)

Note: The genus is commonly found as its orth. var. see reference list below, but see Blume (1825), Govaerts (2013) and IPNI (2013) for the correct combination.

Native distribution areas:

China South-Central, China Southeast.
Eastern Asia
Nansei-shoto, Taiwan.
Indian Subcontinent
Assam, Bangladesh, East Himalaya, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka.
Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam.
Borneo, Jawa, Lesser Sunda Islands, Malaya, Maluku, Philippines, Sulawesi, Sumatera.
New Guinea, Solomon Islands.
Southwestern Pacific
Fiji, New Caledonia, Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu, Wallis-Futuna Islands.

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Blume, C.L. 1825. Bijdragen tot de flora van Nederlandsch Indië 7(3): 353–354. BHL
Pridgeon, A.M., Cribb, P.J., Chase, M.W. & Rasmussen, F.N. (eds.) 2006. Genera Orchidacearum Volume 4 Epidendroideae (Part one); page 117 ff., Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-850712-7. Reference page.

Additional references

'eFloras (2009) Acanthophippium in Flora of China vol. 25 Orchidaceae --> pdf Acanthophippium As orthographic variant Acanthephippium Blume Gen. Pl. 200. (1837)


'eFloras 2009. Acanthophippium in Flora of China vol. 25 Orchidaceae --> pdf Acanthophippium
Global Biodiversity Information Facility. 2021. GBIF Backbone Taxonomy. Checklist dataset. Taxon: Acanthophippium. Accessed: 2021 Mar 29.
Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Acanthophippium in Kew Science Plants of the World online. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 29. Reference page.
Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Acanthophippium in World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 29. Reference page.
Hassler, M. 2021. Acanthophippium. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. 2021. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 29. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2021. Acanthophippium. Published online. Accessed: 29 Mar 2021. 2021. Acanthophippium. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Mar 29.

Vernacular names

hrvatski: Akantofipijum

Acanthophippium is a genus of orchid with thirteen species (family Orchidaceae). The name of this genus is derived from the Greek words acanthos ("spiny") and ephippion ("saddle"), referring to the saddle-like labellum of the plants.

This terrestrial and sometimes myco-heterotrophic genus of sympodial orchids is distributed from the Indian subcontinent to Taiwan, China, Japan, Southeast Asia, New Guinea and the southwest Pacific.[3]

The terrestrial species are up to 80 cm tall. They have short rhizomes. The oblong and fleshy pseudobulbs are up to 25 cm tall. They produce at their apex 2 to 3 large plicate, lanceolate, parallel-veined leaves, which can be up to 65 cm long.[4]

The erect inflorescence arises laterally from the pseudobulbs, with 3 to 6 flowers, subtended by large, glabrous bracts. The flowers are prominent, large, striated cup- or urn-shaped, fleshy, waxy, and about 4 cm long. They resemble a tulip, a most unusual shape for an orchid. The flowers have a wide range of colors, from dull yellow to red to shades of orange and pink, marked with stripes or spots. The blossoms are usually odiferous with a very strong fragrance.[4]

This genus is allied to genera Calanthe, Cephalantheropsis, Phaius, and Spathoglottis.


The genus Acanthophippium was first described by Carl Ludwig Blume in 1825. He used the spelling with an "o".[5] Many sources have since spelt the name "Acanthephippium" (i.e. with an "e"). This is regarded as an orthographic variant by the International Plant Names Index.[6] The original spelling is used by sources such as the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.[1]

Acanthophippium bicolor (S. India, Sri Lanka, New Guinea).
Acanthophippium chrysoglossum (W. Sumatra).
Acanthophippium curtisii (Borneo - Sarawak).
Acanthophippium eburneum (N. Sumatra, Borneo - Sarawak).
Acanthophippium gougahensis (Thailand, Vietnam).
Acanthophippium javanicum (W. Malaysia, Borneo, Java, Sumatra, New Guinea). (type species; commonly grown)
Acanthophippium lilacinum (N. Borneo).
Acanthophippium mantinianum (Philippines) (commonly grown)
Acanthophippium parviflorum (Vietnam, S. Sumatra to Java).
Acanthophippium sinense (China)
Acanthophippium splendidum (Sulawesi to SW. Pacific, New Guinea).
Acanthophippium striatum (E. Himalaya to Java). (commonly grown)
Acanthophippium sylhetense (Sikkim to Philippines)


"Acanthophippium Blume", World Checklist of Selected Plant Families, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, retrieved 2018-01-16
Fitch del. et lith. (= Walter Hood Fitch, 1817-1892) William Jackson Hooker (1785—1865) ed. - "Curtis's botanical magazine" vol. 76 ser. 3 nr. 6 tab. 4492
Flora of China, v 25 p 309, 坛花兰属 tan hua lan shu, Acanthephippium Blume, Bijdr. 353. 1825.
Thomas, S.A. 1997 - Taxonomic revision of the genus Acanthephippium (Orchidaceae). Orchid Monographs, Vol. 8, pp. 119–134, 178-179, 236-246, figures 56-66, plates 5c-6d. Rijksherbarium / Hortus Botanicus, Leiden, The Netherlands.
Blume, C.L. (1825). "Acanthophippium". Bijdragen tot de flora van Nederlandsch Indie (in Latin). pp. 353–354. Retrieved 2018-01-16.
"Plant Name Details for Acanthophippium Blume", The International Plant Names Index, retrieved 2018-01-16

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