Thelymitra megcalyptra Fitzg.

Austral. Orch. 1 (5): t.2 (1879) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Flowering stem erect, straight, 20–60 cm tall, 1.5–5 mm diam., green to purplish. Leaf linear-lanceolate to lanceolate, attenuate, 10–30 cm long, 5–15 mm wide, fleshy, canaliculate, ribbed abaxially, sheathing at base, dark green grading to purplish towards the base. Inflorescence 2–15-flowered, loose. Sterile bracts usually 2. Perianth segments lanceolate to ovate, (9–)15–22 mm long, blue to purplish, occasionally lilac, pink or white. Column slender, (5–)6–8 mm long, pink or pale blue; mid-lobe hooding the anther, tubular, highly inflated, gently curved through c. 90 deg., pale to dark brown, apex bilobed, yellow; lateral lobes converging 1.5–2.2 mm long, digitiform, porrect at base then curved upwards, each with a toothbrush-like arrangement of white hairs, terminating in front of mid-lobe. Anther inserted about mid-way along column, shortly beaked. Flowers Aug.–Nov.

CVU, DunT, Glep, Gold, GGr, HNF, HSF, LoM, MuF, MuM, NIS, OtP, VRiv, VVP, Wim. Also SA, NSW, ACT. Grows mostly in drier inland habitats such as open forest, woodland and mallee scrublands on well-drained sand and clay loams.

Flowers open readily on warm days.

Thelymitra megcalyptra could be confused with T. alpina, but the former favours lower altitudes, the column is not dorsally compressed and the distal margin lacks two forward-pointing horn-like teeth. Thelymitra alcockiae generally has smaller flowers than T. megcalyptra and its leaf and stems are often glaucous.

Created by: Jeff Jeanes, 2014-09-02
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2018-02-16
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Asparagales
family Orchidaceae
genus Thelymitra
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Thelymitra megcalyptra in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Thelymitra megcalyptra in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Lowan Mallee present native
Murray Mallee present native
Wimmera present native
Glenelg Plain present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Victorian Riverina present native
Murray Fans present native
Otway Plain present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Greater Grampians present native
Dundas Tablelands present native
Northern Inland Slopes present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Highlands-Northern Fall present native

State distribution

Distribution map
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory