New critically endangered tree species depends on unique habitat found only on Kaua’i

Main report: New Critically Endangered Species is Endemic to the Forests of Kaua‘i
(National Botanic Garden News)
Other Reporting: Science Daily, Pensoft Blog
Scientific Paper: Phytokeys    (Plazi Treatment)
Species named for: Benjamin Clemens Masterman Stone
Categories: New Species | Plants
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The new Melicope species, 5 to 12 m tall, was first collected and documented as early as 1988.  (Melicope oppenheimeri, described in 2016, is one of the rarest tree species on earth).  94 individuals of the new species Melicope stonei, have been mapped by local botanists in regions featuring unique high canopy mesic forest.  Among the most striking characters of Melicope stonei are the ramiflorous inflorescences, meaning that the flowers spring directly from the branches below the leaves..

Photo Kenneth R. Wood

Melicope stonei. Illus. Alice R. Tangerini

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