17. Cymbidium lowianum (H. G. Reichenbach) H. G. Reichenbach, Gard. Chron., n.s.,. 11: 332. 1879.
碧玉兰 bi yu lan
Plants epiphytic or lithophytic, autotrophic. Pseudobulbs narrowly ellipsoid, slightly bilaterally flattened, 6-13 × 2-6 cm, enclosed in leaf bases. Leaves 5-7, lorate, 65-80 × 2-3.6 cm, articulate 6-9 cm from base, apex shortly acuminate or subacute. Inflorescence arising from within sheaths at base of pseudobulb, suberect or arching, 60-80 cm; rachis 10-20- or more flowered; floral bracts ovate-triangular, ca. 3 mm. Flowers not scented, 7-11.5 cm in diam.; pedicel and ovary 30-40 mm; sepals and petals apple-green or yellowish green with reddish brown longitudinal venation; lip pale yellow to whitish, mid-lobe with a large V-shaped red to pale chestnut or pale brown patch at apex. Sepals narrowly obovate-oblong, 40-50 × 14-16 mm, apex acute. Petals narrowly obovate-oblong, 40-50 × 8-10 mm, apex acute; lip broadly ovate, 35-40 mm, base fused to basal margins of column for 3-4 mm, 3-lobed; lateral lobes erect, triangular; mid-lobe cordate, ca. 16 × 18 mm, margin erose and slightly undulate; disk velvety hairy toward apices of lateral lobes and at center and base of mid-lobe, V-shaped patch at apex of mid-lobe also composed of dense velvety hairs, with 2 short lamellae near base of lip; lamellae minutely hairy, not extending onto mid-lobe. Column arcuate, 27-30 mm, winged, papillate or puberulent near base; pollinia 2, deltoid.
Trees in forests, cliffs along valleys; 1300-1900 m. SE and SW Yunnan [Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam].
Cymbidium lowianum var. ailaoense X. M. Xu (J. S. China Agric. Univ. 26(4): 121. 2005) was described from Yunnan but could not be treated here because no specimens were seen by the present authors.