Australian Native Plants

  Drakaea thynniphila (Narrow-lipped Hammer Orchid)

Drakaea thynniphila photo
Narrow-lipped Hammer Orchid (Western Australia)

Photograph by Mark Brundrett. Some rights reserved.    (view image details)


distribution map showing range of Drakaea thynniphila in Australia

Map is from The Atlas of Living Australia web site, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia License

Common Name
Narrow-lipped Hammer Orchid

The Narrow-lipped Hammer Orchid is endemic to the south west of Western Australia. The labellum is narrower than the closely related Hammer Orchid (Drakea glypotodon). The flower is green and yellow with a red labellum. The labellum has a narrow stalk which is hinged and can move backward towards the stigma. The plant attracts male native wasp pollinators which mistake the labellum for a female wasp. The male tries to grasp the labellum which moves back pushing the wasp into the pollen. Next time the wasp lands on a flower the process is repeating and pollen is transferred to the stigma of another plant. The flowers are produced on straight narrow stems, and flowering is in spring from September to October. The plant produces a heart shaped green leaf.

sandy soil around seasonal winter swamps

Drakaea thynniphila is found in the far south west of Western Australia from about Albany to Margaret River.

Growth Characteristics
Height: 40cm
Common Name:Narrow-lipped Hammer Orchid

Relatives in same Genus
  Drakaea glyptodon