Nepenthes holdenii


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Hello,

This is my pleasure to introduce you to a new species of Nepenthaceae from the Cardamom Mountains, a remote range in Cambodia which has just recently been open to scientists (since the late 1990's). Before, those mountains were a Khmer rouge stronghold zone filled with landmines and tigers. The landmines are still there but the tigers are far less numerous...

It has been discovered by photographer and biologist Jeremy Holden while he was on expedition for Flora Fauna International (FFI) in the early 2000's.

I have been to the Cardamom Mountains with Jeremy a few weeks ago to check that undiagnosed taxon which will be described as a new species.

Herbarium samples have been legally collected and the plant is now on the process of being described. I hope to publish it in the near future. Until then, people will be asked to refer to it as Nepenthes spec. Pursat (from the Pursat province of Cambodia).

The plant belongs to the pyrophytic group of Indochinese Nepenthaceae (ie smilesii, kongkandana ined, bokorensis, thorelii, kampotiana) and like the other species of the group develop underground tubers and grow in places which are frequently exposed to fires and drought.

It is easily recognizable in the wild.

Both male and female inflorescences develop partial peduncles of two flowers which is unique in this group of species and reminiscent of the Malaysian Nepenthes sanguinea.

This species develop broadly infundibular upper pitchers (not cylindrical and there's no hip).

The mature lower pitchers are clearly ovoid and look like N. gymnamphora 's.

You will find below a selection of pictures but a complete field report will be available in the future through Marcello Catalano's site: Nepenthes of Thailand:

http://www.nepenthesofthailand.com/

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This last picture has been taken by Jeremy Holden:

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Truly,

François Mey.

Edited by Sockhom
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Excellent find!

It looks like the uppers are quite variable, and - in my eyes - the similarity with its related species is evident. However, had I only seen the photos of the lowers without any info, I would have thought that it could be an sumatran species, very nice. Thanks for posting the photos.

Regards,

Christer

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  • 1 month later...
  • 5 months later...

Hello,

Here are pics of some ant-plants growing with this Cambodian Nepenthes.

Can someone, please confirm me the IDS of those.

I think there are Hydnophytum sp., Dischidia sp (one of them being D. rafflesiana).

Thanks a lot!

The habitat:

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Great find François! Nice to see that you're becoming a well seasoned botanist getting into all these other amazing plants! heh heh, I must admit that I get off on ferns and orchids too, especially the smaller and unusual ones. Sometimes I'm like a kid in a candy store for the first time! ;) - Rich

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  • 4 months later...

Hello,

This species has been formerly described and the description will be published in Stewart McPherson new books. These will be available in the following days.

"Nepenthes holdenii (Nepenthaceae), a new species of pyrophytic pitcher plant from the Cardamom Mountains of Cambodia. 2010. Mey F. S., M. Catalano, C. Clarke, A. Robinson, A. Fleischmann, S. McPherson. In: S.R. McPherson. Carnivorous Plants in their Habitats. Redfern Natural History Productions Ltd., Poole (Appendix).

The paper also provides a definition of the "Nepenthes thorelii aggregate" - the group of all the "thorelii" related species and a key to separate them.

All the best,

François.

Edited by Sockhom
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This species has been formerly described and the description will be published in Stewart McPherson new books.

"Nepenthes holdenii (Nepenthaceae), a new species of pyrophytic pitcher plant from the Cardamom Mountains of Cambodia.

Yeah! Great job François, Marcello, Charles, Alastair, Andreas and Stewart!

Its fantastic to see the results, the articles and new species, from all your hard work. Thanks guys.

Never had a doubt N. holdenii was a new species, but I didn't realize Jeremy Holden is/was working as part of a larger group specifically studying Cambodian wildlife.

This species seems quite different, being from an area with a four month dry period, this might be the most dry-tolerate species in the genus.

Edited by Dave Evans
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  • 2 weeks later...

The descritpion is now available online:

"Nepenthes holdenii (Nepenthaceae), a new pyrophytic species of pitcher plant from the Cardamom Mountains of Cambodia. 2010. Mey F. S., M. Catalano, C. Clarke, A. Robinson, A. Fleischmann, S. McPherson. In: S.R. McPherson. Carnivorous Plants in their Habitats. Redfern Natural History Productions Ltd., Poole (Appendix).

http://www.carnivorousplants.it/desc.holdenii.pdf

François.

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Thanks a lot guys!

Here is a shot of the tuber rootstock that make the species of that group so peculiar:

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And a couple of shots showing a nice intermediate pitcher:

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and the average size of an upper pitcher:

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Cheers,

François.

Edited by Sockhom
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