Anthogonium gracile Wall. ex Lindl. – not an uncommon species. However, the species was included in the book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, because the author was able to locate its rare white as well as a new yellow to pale brown forms.
Anoectochilus sikkimensis King & Pantling – this species for reasons unclear and unwanted was reduced to Anoectochilus brevilabris Lindl. However, field observations show that the latter is a species with varying characteristics. The stunning close-up photography presented in the book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, helps in understanding the characteristics of the species in great detail and dimension.
Anoectochilus setaceus Blume – a new report from the region of Eastern Himalayas. The book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, presents the first ever photographic evidence of the species from the region in bloom, with its characteristics and habitat explained in detail.
Androcorys pugioniformis (Lindl. ex Hook.f.) K.Y.Lang – my special hunt for orchids growing above 15000 ft produced the documentary evidence of the highest growing species of the Himalayas, if not on Earth.
The book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, presents more details about its altitude, habitat and characteristics.
Androcorys gracilis (King & Pantling) Schltr. – one of the tiniest ground orchids from the Himalayas. It is surprising that the species remained elusive and more interestingly till date without a photographic evidence.
The book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, presents the first and only photographic evidence of the species along with its habitat and characteristics.
The book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, is part of a research program to study and photograph orchid species from the Eastern Himalayas, covering the regions of Eastern Nepal, Sikkim, Darjeeling district, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Nagaland. Two monumental publications – The Flora of British India (1890) by Sir J.D.Hooker and The Orchids of the Sikkim-Himalaya (1898) by Sir George King and Robert Pantling were relied on.
Each species was located in its natural habitats and documented while in bloom, ample time was devoted for this purpose, thereby updating its flowering time precisely, altitudinal range widely, habitat proximately and natural characteristics to detailed perfection. The study also focused on preparing a status report on the population of each species to initiate various conservation programs.
The book, TERRESTRIAL ORCHIDS, the first of its kind, is a collection of 108 rare to very rare ground orchids in the region. Majority of them are the first ever-photographic evidence. The compilation of data took more than 4 years of rigorous survey in the most difficult inhospitable terrains in the region and 45000 km of trekking on foot.
During the course of study, not a single specimen was collected nor damaged. Religiously utmost care was taken so as not to disturb the sanctimonious habitat of the studied specimens. The nomenclature of each species is in accordance with the current World Checklist of selected plant families, Kew Royal Botanic Gardens.
The author thanks each and every individual and all institutions in the region as well as from around the globe, who directly or indirectly helped on a daily basis or for a short duration, during the course of study.
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