Another two novel plant species of Ichtyoselmis macrantha and Eranthemum macrophyllum were discovered in the Tongbiguan nature reserve, west Yunnan’s Dehong prefecture, with the discoveries posted recently on the academic journals of Taiwania and Journal of Tropical and Subtropical Botany.
The discoveries are said to have been done in 2018 and 2019, when a joint field work was carried out by botanists with the Tongbiguan reserve management, the Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden of Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), and the CAS South China Botanical Garden.
“We’re first impressed by its lovely flowers. Having looked through the plant samples, I think it probably belongs to the Eranthemum macrophyllum Wall. ex Nees visible in Myanmar,” said Shen Jianyong, an engineer with the Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden.
The Tongbiguan reserve is near the China-Myanma border, and Shen’s speculation was confirmed by Deng Yunfei, a senior researcher with the CAS South China Botanical Garden.
The Ichtyoselmis macrantha (Oliver) Lidén was once gathered by George Forrest in May 1925 in north Myanmar, with its flower color recorded. However, the color was ignored by authenticators later, and without a sample in sight, error occurred in the authentication back then.
George Forrest was a Scottish botanist, who became one of the first western explorers of China's then remote southwestern province of Yunnan, generally regarded as the most biodiverse province in the country.
Source: The Paper, CCTV and others; Trans-editing by Wang Shixue