"The authors of this introductory text are acknowledged experts
on tropical American orchids with decades of combined experience of
orchids in both the wild and culture. You could not find a better
trio of enthusiasts and specialists to introduce you to the
wonderful and occasionally bizarre world of tropical American
orchids." from the Foreword by Phillip J. Cribb
Orchids of Tropical America is an entertaining, informative, and
splendidly illustrated introduction to the orchid family for
enthusiasts and newcomers seeking to learn about more than 120
widespread orchid genera. Joe E. Meisel, Ronald S. Kaufmann, and
Franco Pupulin bring alive the riot of colors, extraordinary
shapes, and varied biology and ecology of the principal orchid
genera ranging from Mexico and the Caribbean to Bolivia and Brazil.
Orchids, likely the most diverse family of plants on earth, reach
their peak diversity in the tropical countries of the Western
Hemisphere, including, for example, more than 2,500 species in
Brazil and 4,000 in Ecuador. The book also highlights reserves in
the American tropics where travelers can enjoy orchids in the
Whether you journey abroad to see these unique plants, raise
them in your home, or admire them from afar, this book offers
fascinating insights into the diversity and natural history of
orchids. Beyond the plant and flower descriptions, Orchids of
Tropical America is packed with informative stories about the
ecology and history of each genus. Pollination ecology is given in
detail, with an emphasis on how floral features distinctive to the
genus are linked to interaction with pollinators. This book also
features information on medicinal and commercial uses, notes on the
discoverers, and relevant historical data.
The easy-to-use identification system permits quick recognition
of the most common orchid groups in Central and South America.
Genus descriptions are given in plain language designed for a
nonscientific audience but will prove highly useful to advanced
botanists as well. Descriptions focus on external morphology, and
great care has been taken to ensure the guide is useful in the
field without reliance on microscopes or dissections. Equally
valuable as a field guide, a desktop reference, or a gift, Orchids
of Tropical America will make an excellent addition to any orchid
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