Cyrtostylis robusta D.L.Jones & M.A.Clem.

Large Gnatorchid

Lindleyana 2: 157 (1987) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Flowering plant 4–19 cm tall. Leaf cordate, kidney-shaped or circular, 16–53 mm long, 18–50 mm wide, light to medium green above, partially transparent below. Flowers 2–7, pinkish-red, c. 13 mm long; pedicel (including ovary) 5–11 mm long, subtended by bract less than half as long; dorsal sepal erect or incurved, linear-tapering, 10–13 mm long, obtuse; lateral sepals similar to dorsal sepal but projected forwards or spreading, usually under labellum; petals spreading or down-curved, linear, narrower than sepals but similar in length. Labellum projecting horizontally forward or somewhat decurved, sessile, oblong, 10–15 mm long, 4–6 mm wide, apex usually roundish with short tapered point, margins at distal end scalloped. Flowers Jul.–Sep.

Brid, CVU, EGL, EGU, GipP, Glep, GGr, NIS, OtP, VVP, WaP, WPro. Also WA, SA. Scattered across southern Victoria in coastal scrub and extending to forest habitats as far inland as Mt Arapiles in the west of the State.

Cyrtostylis robusta is a more robust species than C. reniformis, usually taller, with more flowers and larger floral parts, and with distinctly different coloured leaves. However, a study by Kores et al. (1993) showed that there are no clear disjunctions in organ sizes between C. robusta and C. reniformis, and that C. robusta cannot be maintained as a distinct taxon based on size alone. In intermediate cases, the labellum apex shape and leaf colour should enable the two taxa to be distinguished. Their ranges occasionally overlap in Victoria, but C. robusta flowers earlier.

Source: Entwisle, T.J. (1994). Orchidaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 2, Ferns and Allied Plants, Conifers and Monocotyledons. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Jeff Jeanes, 2014-11-20
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Asparagales
family Orchidaceae
genus Cyrtostylis
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Cyrtostylis robusta in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Cyrtostylis robusta in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Glenelg Plain present native
Bridgewater present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Warrnambool Plain present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Greater Grampians present native
Northern Inland Slopes present native
East Gippsland Lowlands present native
East Gippsland Uplands present native
Wilsons Promontory present native

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia
New South Wales