Art. XXX.—Description of a New Species of Corysanthes.
[Read before the Auckland Institute, 10th October, 1898.]
Corysanthes matthewsii, n. sp.
A very delicate little plant, barely more than 1in. in-height, including the flower. Leaf ½ in.—1 in. in length, solitary, membranous, broadly ovate-cordate or orbicular-cordate, sessile, subacute or obtuse, when dry showing one or two veins on each side of the midrib connected by transverse veinleta. Flower solitary, shortly peduncled, about ½ in. in length, drooping, purplish-green. Bract small, erect, Upper sepal very narrow at the base, widened towards the tip and arched forwards, so as to become hood-shaped, obtuse. Lateral sepals and petals very small, narrow linear-subulate, barely more than one-half the length of the lip. Lip large, involute, the lateral margins meeting behind the column and enclosing it, orbicular-cordate or slightly three-lobed when spread out, veined; apex truncate, produced downwards, entire or very slightly fringed. Column short, stout, curved. Fully ripe capsules not seen.
Hab. Vicinity of Kaitaia, Mongonui County: Mr. R. H. Matthews.
I have pleasure in dedicating this pretty little plant to its discoverer, to whom I am indebted for much interesting information respecting the botany of his district. It agrees with Corysanthes cheesemanii, Hook, f., in the lateral sepals and petals being much reduced in size, but differs altogether in the shape of the lip, which is not recurved at the apex, nor produced at the base into the two curious spurs of
G. cheesemanii. The upper sepal is also much narrower. Except for the great difference in the size of the lateral sepals and petals the structure of the flower is much nearer that of C. oblonga. But the flowers are larger than in that species, the lip is not coarsely fringed at the apex, and the upper sepal is narrower at the base and much more hood-shaped at the tip.