Caladenia nothofageti

Common Name(s)

Beech Caladenia

Current Conservation Status

2012 - Not Threatened

Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2012 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2009 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, Paul D. Champion, Shannel P. Courtney, Peter B. Heenan, John W. Barkla, Ewen K. Cameron, David A. Norton and Rodney A. Hitchmough. File size: 792KB

Previous Conservation Status

2009 - Not Threatened
2004 - Not Threatened


Caladenia nothofageti D.L.Jones, Molloy et M.A.Clem.



Flora Category

Vascular - Native

NVS Species Code


The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.

Structural Class



Petalochilus nothofageti (D.L.Jones, Molloy et M.A.Clem.) D.L.Jones et M.A.Clem.


Endemic. North and South Islands. In the North present from about Lake Taupo south.


Lowland to montane (up to 1000 m a.s.l). Virtually confined to beech (Nothofagus Blume) forest where it favours well-lighted sites relatively free from other taller plants. Often found on banks or lining track sides. Sometimes found around the margins of seepages.


Solitary, hirsute, terrestrial, tuberous herb. Leaf semi-erect, 40-180 x 1-3 mm, bright green, narrowly linear, sparsely glandular pubescent. Flowering scape, slender, wiry, 50-100 mm tall, green, glandular-pubescent. Sterile bracts closely sheathing, 8-10 x 2-3 mm, oblong-lanceolate, obtuse to acute, externally glandular-pubescent; fertile bracts closely sheathing, 5.0-7.0 x 2.0-2.5 mm, lanceolate, externally glandular pubescent. Ovary, 6-8 mm long, narrowly ellipsoid, green, glandular-pubescent. Flower unscented, usually solitary, 14-16 mm diameter, externally greenish-white, internally white. Tepals externally sparsely glandular; dorsal sepal erect and slightly incurved; lateral sepals porrect to obliquely decurved, slightly divergent; petals spreading to drooping. Dorsal sepal 8.0-9.5 x 2.0-3.0 mm, narrowly obovate, obtuse. Lateral sepals 8.0-9.5 x 2.3 mm, narrowly oblanceolate, slightly falcate, obtuse. Petals 8.0-9.0 x 2.2 mm, falcate, subacute. Labellum white (very rarely with faint pink transverse bars), articulated on a short 0.3 x 0.7 mm claw, trilobed. Lamina transversely ovate in outline when flattened, 5.5-6.5 x 5.0-5.5 mm, erect in proximal third, porrect to decurved in distal two-thirds, apex decurved; lateral lobes 2.3 mm wide, erect and column-embracing, entire; mid-lobe 3 mm long, oblong-tapered; margins cream to pale yellow, with 4-6 pairs of flat marginal calli to 0.8 mm long, these decrescent and irregular towards apex. Lamina calli pale yellow, in 2 rows extending onto the base of the mid-lobe. Basal calli 2-4, stipitate; head ovoid or bifurcate, c.0.6 mm diameter, papillate. Longest lamina calli 1 mm long, stipitate; head 0.2 mm diameter, papillate. Column 5.5-6.0 x 2.5 mm, green, shallowly incurved, narrowly winged; central anterior ridge c.1 mm wide. Anther c.1.3 x 1.3 mm, cream, papillate, with a short rostrum. Pollinia 4, 1 mm long, flat, white, mealy, incoherent. Stigma semi-circular, 1 mm diameter sunken. Capsule erect 10.2-12.0 mm long, ovoid to ovoid-ellipsoid, green often with purple stripes

Similar Taxa

Closest to Caladenia chlorostyla from which it differs by its mostly solitary, white flowers or greenish-white flowers. The labellum is usually uniformly white but on rare occasions it can be transversely faintly pink-barred. This species is very close to P. minor and is regarded by many as simply a colour-variant of it.


November - January

Flower Colours



January - April

Propagation Technique

Difficult - should not be removed from the wild.


Not Threatened

Endemic Taxon


Endemic Genus


Endemic Family


Where To Buy

Not commercially available


Jones et al. (2001) revived the genus Petalochilus R.S.Rogers (erected by Rogers (1924) for what has come to be viewed as a peloric state of Caladenia R.Br. - see Moore & Edgar (1970)) for a distinct clade of mostly New Zealand orchids that had usually been referred to as Caladenia. Subsequently Hopper et al. (2004) showed how the reorganisation of Caladenia by Jones et al. (2001) was unworkable and they recommended a return to Caladenia and the other allied Australian genera that had been recognised previously. Following discussion with S. Hopper and P. Weston (pers. comm., 2011, 2014) the treatment of Hopper et al. (2004) is preferred to that of Jones et al. (2001) and so followed here.


Fact Sheet prepared for NZPCN by P.J. de Lange 14 April 2007. Description modified from Jones et al. (1997).

References and further reading

Hopper, S.D.; Brown, A.P. 2004: Robert Brown's Caladenia revisited, including a revision of its sister genera Cyanicula, Ericksonella and Pheladenia (Caladeniinae: Orchidaceae). Australian Systematic Botany 17: 1-240.

Jones, D.L.; Molloy, B.P.J.; Clements, M.A. 1997: Three new species and a new combination in Caladenia R.Br. (Orchidaceae) from New Zealand. The Orchadian 12: 221-229.

Jones, D.L.; Clements, M.A.; Sharma, I.K.; Mackenzie, A.M. 2001: A New Classification of Caladenia R.Br. (Orchidaceae). The Orchadian 13: 389-419.

Moore, L.B.; Edgar, E. 1970: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. II. Government Printer, Wellington.

Rogers, R.S. 1924: Petalochilus: a New Genus of New Zealand Orchids. Journal of Botany 62: 65-67.

This page last updated on 3 Dec 2014