Scientific name: Barkeria vanneriana Rchb. f.
Common name: Vanner’s Barkeria
Epidendrum vannerianum (1885)
Barkeria lindleyana subsp. vanneriana (1971)
A scandent or climbing deciduous herb with a rupicolous habit (very rarely epiphytic) that grows between 45-100 cm. The plant has a lax disposition and so tends to fall over, lean or become pendulous if its aerial roots cannot attach firmly to a rock substrate. Roots: thickened, terete, long, fleshy, rarely branched, white in color with green tips. Stems: grayish-white, thickened, slightly compressed laterally with 9-11 internodes, 6-16 cm. in length. Older stems are covered with scarious, papery bracts. Acrotonic, new growths develop with 5-6 internode spacings between them (approximately 3.5-8 cm. apart) and higher than the previous growth which results in the formation of an ascendant sympodium. Leaves: 5-7, lanceolate-elliptic to ovate, acute to subacuminate, distichous, coriaceous to subsucculent, present only on the newly developing growth and appressed to the stem via an articulated joint. Leaves are green but suffused with reddish-purple pigmentation, particularly on the reverse of the lamina. Inflorescence: terminal, erect, straight, unbranched raceme, from the new growth, on an elongated subterete, rather thin peduncle covered by tubular bracts (scarious at anthesis) 15-90 cm. in length with 3-18 flowers. Flowers: Attractive, resupinate, inodorous, 3.0-4.5 cm. diameter spread, lilac to magenta with intense color saturation. The lip is concolorous with the tepals with the exception of a darker apical blotch and a prominent white or pale pink circle on the disk. Sepals are subequal, lanceolate to narrowly elliptical, subacuminate, wider at the base and with seven parallel nerves. Petals have a grooved underside, subapiculate, and obliquely elliptic, subovate-rhombic or oblanceolate with seven nerves on the dorsal surface. Both lip and column point down in their natural configuration. The lip is entire, panduriform to subovate and extended; the basal margins of the lip are cordate, incurved and wrap around the column while the base is narrowed at its attachment to the column; lateral margins are slightly deflexed while the distal end has slightly undulating margins; and the apex of the lip is rounded or subtruncate, sometimes emarginate. The callus is cream-white in color except under the column where two lamina with purple longitudinal striping delimit an elliptical fovea. The exposed part of the callus converges into three raised longitudinal keels, with the central one reaching all the way to the apex of the lip and becoming more elevated at the terminus. The column is magenta with the recurved wings greenish in color and suffused with dark purple spots. The trigonous column is dorsiventrally compressed into a obtriangular shape and the ventral surface has a shallow groove that ends in a dry basal cuniculus. The clinandrium is topped with three projections, of which the central one is widened and flattened to partially obscure the saddle-shaped, white, anther cap.