11. Herminium J. E. Guettard, Hist. Acad. Sci. Paris. 1750. Mem. Math. Phys.: 374: 1754, nom. cons.
Herminium Linn., Opera Varia 251. 1758; Hook.f. Fl. Brit. Ind. 6:128. 1890.
Small plants with roundish tuberoids. Leaves 1-2 or several, cauline or ± basal. Inflorescence dense, with many small greenish or yellowish-green, resupinate flowers. Perianth segments connivent; sepals subequal, petals sometimes longer. Labellum entire or 3-lobed or 3-5 dentate, flattish-ligulate, spurless, but sometimes ± concave at base. Column very small; anther erect, without canals, cells parallel or slightly divergent downwards; pollinia 2, sectile, with very short caudicles, attached to separate, large, sometimes brown-shining, horn-like viscid glands; stigma 2, distant, sessile, cushion-shaped or protruding; staminodes 2, sometimes strap-shaped. Ovary ± sessile, slightly twisted, apex ± bent downwards.
A genus of about 40 species, with more than half occuring in China, a few in E. Asia and one in Europe. Represented by 3 species in Pakistan, all inhabiting the, high mountains in the North of the country. Members of this genus reach the highest range in altitude among the Orchids, some as Herminium pugioniforme, grow in the N. W. Himalayan Mts. and in Nepal up to 5000 m.,appr. 1000 m below the extreme limit at which plants live (which in the Karakorum, according to R. Pampanini, La Flora del Caracorum p. 271 (Bologna 1930) is close to 5800 m.
Some gatherings mentioned in Stewart’s Catalogue as Herminium macrophyllum (D. Don) Dandy from Baltistan (Winterbottom 743! at K) and Kashmir (R. R. Stewart 9722 and H. Rich 1190! both in K) are identical with Herminium monorchis (L.) R. Br.