1 Tahrcountry Musings: Smallest Orchid in the World Discovered

Monday, November 30, 2009

Smallest Orchid in the World Discovered

Dr Lou Jost, an American botanist has discovered the world’s smallest orchid in the Cerro Candelaria reserve in the eastern Andes of Ecuador. Dr Jost, who works for the EcoMinga Foundation, is one of the world's leading orchid hunters.

The discovery was quite accidental. The orchid was hidden among the roots of a larger plant. The orchid is just 2.1mm wide. The petals of the flower are just one cell thick and transparent.

More than 1,000 orchid species have been discovered in Ecuador in the past century.

Dr Jost has also recently discovered a group of 28 types of orchid of Teagueia genus evolved in a mountainous area the size of London. Discovery of 28 closely related orchids in such a small patch of land has been described as a botanical equivalent of Darwin's finches by the scientists.

1 comment:

RuMidori said...

We must protect this planet so that new species of plants and animals can be discovered and appreciated!

I work with The Nature Conservancy and wanted to mention their Green Gift Guide (www.nature.org/giftguide) and the Top 5 Eco-Friendly Holiday Gifts (listed below).

Hoping you can help encourage holiday shoppers to give gifts that will go twice as far, unique gifts all on their list will love + ones that protect some of the world's most precious habitats for future generations.


Top 5 Green Holiday Gifts:

Adopt an Acre – in the US or aboard:
http://adopt.nature.org/

Plant Trees in the Atlantic Forest, each tree is just $1
http://adopt.nature.org/plantabillion/brazil/gift.html

Adopt a Coral Reef
http://adopt.nature.org/coralreef/

Help Save the Northern Jaguar (NEW THIS YEAR)
http://my.nature.org/gifts/jaguar.html

Give the Gift of Clean Water
http://my.nature.org/gifts/water.html

View all available eco-friendly holiday gifts at: http://www.nature.org/giftguide

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The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at: www.nature.org.