One of India’s Smallest Orchids discovered in Assam
Lecanorchis taiwaniana (The parasitic bloom), a type of orchid was accidentally discovered in Assam by Assam’s forest officer named Jatindra Sarma . He is also the Member Secretary of State Medicinal Plants Board.
- The orchid species is already known in Japan, Taiwan, and Laos. This is the first time it is discovered in India.
- Its discovery was published in Japanese Journal of Botany with title as “new record for the flora in India”.
- Lecanorchis taiwaniana is a mycoheterotroph, which means it is one of two known types of parasitic plants which have abandoned photosynthesis. As it derives nutrients and its energy from fungus, it may be of herbal importance.
- It is a variant of a Japanese orchid.
- It is India’s one of smallest botanically recorded orchids in terms of size and duration of bloom.
Importance: The discovery of Lecanorchis taiwaniana adds to the orchid wealth of northeast India (NEI). India has about 1,300 species of orchids out of which 800 are found in NEI, about 300 species are found in Western Ghats and 200 in northwestern Himalayas.