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Species profile—Sarcochilus weinthalii (blotched sarcochilus)


Plantae (plants) → Equisetopsida (land plants) → OrchidaceaeSarcochilus weinthalii (blotched sarcochilus)

Species details

Plantae (plants)
Equisetopsida (land plants)
Scientific name
Sarcochilus weinthalii F.M.Bailey
Common name
blotched sarcochilus
WildNet taxon ID
Alternate name(s)
botched sarcochilus
Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NCA) status
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC) status
Conservation significant
Pest status
Short Notes
BRI 394187, handwriting of author
Sarcochilus weinthalii occurs as small, single plants on the upper branches of rainforest trees. It forms projecting or semi-pendulous clumps with white, fleshy roots. It has short stems that rarely branch and are normally about 3cm in length, but can reach 8cm. The stems have 3-7 slightly curved, yellowish-green leaves, their shape ranging from small and oval to long and linear. The leaves are thin, leathery, slightly channelled and 3-9cm long by 0.7-1.2cm wide.
Usually one pendulous flower shoot grows from where the leaf joins the stem. Each shoot carries 3-12 very attractive, fragrant, stalked flowers. The flowers are cream, white or greenish with large purple and reddish blotches. Flowers are 10-15mm across with an outer whorl of 3 sepals (leaf-like flower parts attached to the outer base of the petals), which are similar to the 2 petals of the inner whorl. The tepals (sepals and petals) are broad and up to 1cm long by 3-4mm wide with a narrowed base. Each tepal has 1-3 blotches and several small spots at the base. The labellum (a modified lower petal) has 3 lobes. The central lobe is small, approximately 1.5mm long and projects forward. The side lobes are 4mm long by 1mm wide and curve inwards. The fruit is a yellow-green, elongated and ribbed capsule up to 6cm long.
The conspicuously blotched flowers make S. weinthalii easily recognisable. When not in flower S. weinthalii can resemble S. falcatus. However, S. falcatus has stiffer and more leathery leaves, and its old flower shoots are black when dry. (Barker & Borsboom 1997)
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Sarcochilus weinthalii grows on the upper branches of rainforest trees. It occurs in the dry rainforest of sub-coastal ranges and associated foothills well inland from the coast and to approximately 700m above sea level. It grows in araucarian microphyll vine forest, araucarian notophyll vine forest or in patches of isolated scrub. (Barker & Borsboom 1997)
Sarcochilus weinthalii flowers from June to October. The fruits persist for 6-8 months after pollination and when ripe, release numerous light brown seeds. (Barker & Borsboom 1997)
Threatening processes
Habitat loss through land clearing and forestry operations, illegal collecting.
Management documents
Conservation and management of protected plants in trade in Queensland 1995-1998. Department of Environment.
Contributors: Weslawa Misiak 16/09/1998; Peter Bostock, Mellisa Mayhew 13/03/2009
Barker, M. and Borsboom, A. (1997). Sarcochilus weinthalii, in Species Management Manual. Department of Natural Resources, Brisbane.
Barry, S.J. & Thomas, G.T. (1994). Threatened Vascular Rainforest Plants of South-east Queensland: A Conservation Review. Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage.
Clements, M.A. (1989). Catalogue of Australian Orchidaceae. Australian Orchid Research 1: 1-160.
Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (2008). Sarcochilus weinthalii in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, Canberra. Accessed 15/10/2008.
Herbrecs (2008). Sarcochilus weinthalii, in BriMapper version 2.12. Queensland Herbarium. Accessed 15/10/2008.
Jones, D.L. (1988). Native Orchids of Australia. Reed Books, Sydney. 656 pp.
Profile author
Peter Bostock (13/03/2009)

Other resources

Data source

This profile data is sourced from the QLD Wildlife Data API using the Get species by ID function used under CC-By 4.0.

This information is sourced from the WildNet database managed by the Queensland Department of Environment and Science.

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Last updated
8 March 2022