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New orchid species discovered in Songkhla

A team of researchers from Prince of Songkla University has discovered a new species of orchid called “Aphyllorchis periactinantha” in the area of the province’s Paribatra waterfall, sparking interest and wonder among botanists and plant enthusiasts alike.

By National News Bureau of Thailand

Wednesday 1 March 2023, 09:52AM

Photo: NNT

Photo: NNT


Faculty of Science’s Department of Biology lecturer at Prince of Songkla University, Professor Sahut Chantanaorrapint, has named an orchid after the Paribatra waterfall, where it was discovered, reports state news agency NNT.

The findings were later documented in the global botanical publication, PhytoKeys.

The newly discovered orchid is a mycoheterotrophic plant, which means it is partly or entirely non-photosynthetic and instead obtains energy and nutrients from fungi.

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According to Professor Sahut, the orchid’s branch can grow up to 150 centimeters and is full of flowers. The flowers, which come in white and soft yellow, can be viewed during the blooming season between October and December. The plant can also be found in forests located in Yala and Narathiwat provinces. 

The researchers said the discovery has important implications for conserving unique and endangered plant species and restoring natural habitats and will inspire further study and conservation efforts in the country. 

Before the discovery of the orchid, the region surrounding Paribatra waterfall had been developed as a tourist destination. The area has been among the well-known tourist spots for Thais and foreign visitors. 


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