Rare orchid found

Mountainlands recently delighted yet another enthusiastic group of greenies. The field trip arranged by the Mpumalanga Plant Specialist Group (PSG) was also attended by members of the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) and the Custodians of Rare and Endangered Wildflowers (CREW) Programme. The trip yielded a couple of unexpected and rare plant finds.

One of the highlights was Eulophia chlorantha. This green flowered orchid is recorded from only a few localities and was last spotted in the area in the 1960’s. Finding Helichrysum calocephalum caused another ‘goosepump moment’. These slender plants with pinkish, clustered flower-heads were spotted at several places in the reserve.

The group also searched for Hypoxis patula which is now a synonym for Hypoxis henerocallidea. Little is known of this plant which is only known from the Saddleback Mountain on the reserve. Although they did not find this specific plant, seven other Hypoxis were identified.

Eulophia chlorantha

 

Come rain or shine, PSG members push on in the search for rare plants.

 

 

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