Saturday 16 May 2015

Liparis wenshanensis: A new species of Orchid from Yunnan Province, China.

Orchids of the genus Liparis are found across tropical Asia, New Guinea, the islands of the southwest Pacific and tropical and subtropical regions of the Americas. There are currently sixty five species known to grow in China, of which 22 are considered to be endemic (i.e. to grow nowhere else). They are herbaceous plants that can be ground dwelling, rock living or epiphytic (growing on the branches of trees), most produce persistent rhizomes  (roots from which the plant can completely regrow) and a few are mycotrophic, gaining all there sustenance from Fungi normally symbiotic with plants without giving anything back in return.

In a paper published in the journal Phytotaxa on 8 April 2015, a group of scientists led by Yong-Yu Su of the College of Forestry at South ChinaAgricultural University, the Shenzhen Key Laboratory for Orchid Conservation and Utilization, The National Orchid Conservation Center of China and The OrchidConservation and Research Center of Shenzhen describe a new species of Liparis from Yunnan Province, China. 

The new species is named Liparis wenshanensis, meaning ‘from Wenshan’; the species was found growing in Wenshan Prefecture, where a total of six colonies were found on moist, shady slopes in evergreen broad-leafed forest at an altitude of about 1500 m. The plants were found in moxed colonies along with the Orchid Bletilla sinensis, the two species being indistinguishable until flowers were produced.

Liparis wenshanensis produces two blade-like leaves 8-13 cm in length from a small pseudobulb. Flowers are small and white with green surrounds and purple centres, they are borne in inflorescences of 45-55 on rachises 45-55 cm in length.

Liparis wenshanensis. (A) Flowering plant. (B) Flower, side view. (C) Column and lip, longitudinal section. (D) Flower, front view. (E) Pollinarium. Su et al. (2015).

See also…

Orchids of the genus Gastrodia are found across temperate and tropical Asia, Oceania and Madagascar. They are mycoheterotrophs; parasitic plants which obtain nutrients and sugars from Mycorrhizal Fungi (Fungi which normally form symbiotic relationships... Freckled Cypripedium classified as Endangered.                                                 The International Union for the Conservation of Nature published its annual update of its Red List of Threatened Species on Thursday 12 June 2014, marking the 50th year of the list's existence, and revising the status of a number of Plant and Animal species from around the...
Orchids of the genus Encyclia are widespread in the American tropics, living as epiphytes (plants that live on other plants, typically on the branches of rainforest trees), terrestrial herbs and on exposed rocks. They are found from Florida to northern Argentina, and live in...

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