Resupination generally means being upside-down, supine, facing upward.[1] The word is derived from the Latin. In a biological context, the concept is commonly expressed with the adjectives "resupinate" or "non-resupinate."

Examples in green plants

Structures in a green plant will sometimes twist around from their original positions into a resupinate form.


The genera Bomarea and Alstroemeria often exhibit resupinate leaves.


In the family Orchidaceae, the flower tepals typically comprise three sepals and three petals. One petal, called the lip or labellum, is typically quite different from the other two and comes from the same direction of the flower as the stigmatic surface. As an orchid flower bud develops, the lip is usually uppermost; in most cases, the flower stem twists to present the lip pointing down by the time the flower opens. That is, most orchid flowers are resupinate. Because resupination is the most common condition in orchid flowers, the lack of resupination is notable; flowers which do not exhibit resupination are described as "non-resupinate."

Examples in fungi

In fungi, the term "resupinate" describes a fruiting body consisting of a fertile surface adnate to the substrate.[2] Certain genera such as Peniophora[3] are notable for many of their species being resupinate.


  1. Webster's New World Dictionary of the American Language, College Edition 1964, The World Publishing Company, Cleveland and New York
  3. C. Michael Hogan. 2008. Witch's Butter: Tremella mesenterica,, ed. N. Stromberg
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