Gastrodia putaoensis, a new species from northern Myanmar

Gastrodia putaoensis, a new species from the montane region in northern Myanmar, is described and illustrated.

Gastrodia R.Br. (Gastrodieae, Epidendroideae, Orchidaceae) is a genus of mycoheterotrophic plants, comprising approximately 90 species, distributed from India and eastern Asia, through Malaysia to Australia, as well as in tropical Africa. Gastrodia is characterized by a tuberous rhizome, sepals united into tube throughout most of their length, a spurless lip, pollinia two and sectile, and a shield shaped stigma positioned at the base of the column. 

During our fieldwork in Hkakarborazi Natural Park, Putao, Kachin State, Myanmar, from 2010 to 2016, a new species of Gastrodia, described below, was discovered. 

 A species similar to G. dyeriana, but differing by having greyish white flowers with the lip narrowly triangular and subdivided into two parts with the apical part near tip densely covered with yellow hairs, and the lip apex obtuse and densely covered with red papillae. The epithet of the new species is derived from the name of Putao District, northern Myanmar, where the type was collected.

This research was supported by grants from Southeast Asia Biodiversity Research Inst., Chinese Academy of Sciences (grant no. Y4ZK111B01), the National Natural Science Founda?tion of China (grant no. 31670194, 31110103911). The result published as Gastrodia putaoensis sp. nov. (Orchidaceae, Epidendroideae) from North Myanmar on Nordic Journal of Botany.

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Close up of flower of Gastrodia putaoensis sp. nov. (A) sepal and petal tubes, (B) lip.

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Gastrodia putaoensis sp. nov. (A) habit, (B) sepal lobes and petals, (C) lip, (D) front view of column.