Microtis orbicularis R.S.Rogers

Dark Mignonette-orchid

Trans. & Proc. Roy. Soc. South Australia 31: 63, t. 20 fig. 1 (1907) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Threat status:Victoria: vulnerable (v)

Flowering stem 10–40 cm tall, slender, characteristically bent at apex of leaf-sheath. Leaf erect, 10–25 cm long, almost solid, green; sheath opening close to bottom of inflorescence.  Flowers 3–30, green, often with red tints, erect, in moderately loose spike 2–10 cm long; ovary obovoid, 2–3 mm long, sessile; dorsal sepal ovate, 1–2 mm long, obtuse, hooded, gradually narrowing towards base; lateral sepals linear, similar in length to dorsal sepal, somewhat acute, appressed to ovary, concealed below labellum; petals ovate-lanceolate, 1–2 mm long, spreading or recurved below the dorsal sepal. Labellum pendulous, flat, more or less circular, 1–2 mm long, fleshy; margins entire; apex rounded; lamina somewhat concave, often with small pit in centre; calli absent. Column with minute conical fleshy auricles. Flowers Sept.-Dec.

DunT, GipP, Glep, GGr, LoM, VVP, WPro, Wim. Also WA, SA, Tas. This semi-aquatic species often flowers in shallow water around the margins of swamps. It occurs in south-west Victoria (e.g. Portland, Grampians, Little Desert) and east of Melbourne on French Island, Wonthaggi area (where possibly now extinct) and Wilsons Promontory.

The nearly circular labellum lamina without calli and the hidden lateral sepals characterize M. orbicularis.

The recent placement of this species into the genus Hydrorchis has not been generally accepted.

Created by: Jeff Jeanes, 2015-02-20
Updated by: Jeff Jeanes, 2015-02-20
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Asparagales
family Orchidaceae
genus Microtis
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Microtis orbicularis in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Microtis orbicularis in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Lowan Mallee present native
Wimmera present native
Glenelg Plain present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Greater Grampians present native
Dundas Tablelands present native
Wilsons Promontory present native

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia