What Drives Orchid Diversity?

In Defense of Plants has a great podcast about orchid diversity with Dr. Tatiana Arias, who is a botanist at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens in Sarasota, Florida. Arias is trying to understand why orchids are so diverse, and what drives their evolution. Orchids boast incredible variety among 30,000 species worldwide. She’s particularly interested in her home country, Colombia, which has over 4200 native species. Her research focuses on Pleurothallids, such as Lepanthes and Draculas, and requires collaboration with other scientists, hobbyists, farmers, and even former guerrillas. Some basic questions, like defining what a species is, can be challenging. With legal permits, Arias collects leaves and flowers to make dried herbarium specimens, takes pictures, and does genetic analyses. She’s always conscious of how endangered many of these orchids are, and works to conserve them. Learn more at the Arias Lab.

Explore posts in the same categories: Conservation, In the News

Subscribe to the About Orchids Blog:
AddThis Feed Button

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.