Epidendrum amphistomum A.Rich.

Dingy Flowered Star Orchid

Facts About

Accepted Synonyms: Epidendrum amphisotomum f. rubrifolium, Epidendrum secundum subsp. briegeri

Epidendrum amphistomum, the Dingy Flowered Star Orchid, is distributed in the West Indies, Central America, northern South America and Florida. This orchid has 5-13 elliptic leaves that alternate on the stem. The flowering period is January to July but flowers may develop at any other time of year. It produces up to 25 green to brownish flowers on a compact terminal raceme. Flowers produce a fragrance reminiscent of overly ripe vegetables, heaviest between late afternoon and dawn. The labellum has a distinct central ridge. In south Florida, this orchid grows in swamps and hammocks, often in disturbed habitats that no longer support other orchids.

Epidendrum amphistomum is considered endangered in Florida although its conservation status has not been determined across its entire range.


This orchid is pollinated by nocturnal male moths including Cisseps fulvicollis, Lymire edwardsii, Nelphe carolina and Oxydia vesulia. Although this orchid does produce nectar, moths may be initially attracted to these flowers between late afternoon and dawn by their strong fragrance similar to very ripe vegetables.

Ecosystem Type

Shrublands or thickets, swamps, woodlands


Leaf arrangement:
Number of leaves on stem:
  • five
  • six
  • seven or more
Form of the labellum:
the labellum is not pouch-like
Labellum outline:
the labellum is lobed
Main color of labellum:
  • green to brown
  • yellow
Nectar spur:
Inflorescence type:
the inflorescence is a raceme
Labellum characteristics:
the labellum is lobed
Labellum length:
4–6 mm
Sepal length:
5.5–7.5 mm
Plant height:
Up to 110 cm
Show All Characteristics

Native to North America


North American Conservation Status & Distribution

Conservation Status

Select a location to view conservation status:

Conservation and Wetland Status
Global Rank N/A
US Status N/A
Canadian Status N/A

North America Distribution

Adapted from USDA data