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New plant species discovered in Southwest China

Xinhua | Updated: 2018-01-03 16:24

KUNMING -- Chinese scientists have discovered a new endangered species of flowering plant from the Primulaceae family, and the finding has been published in the Nordic Journal of Botany.

The new species, Primula Zhui, known in Chinese as Zhu Hua Baochun, was named after Zhu Hua, a researcher from Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden under the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).

"It is named after Zhu for his great contribution to botanical research in tropical areas," said Yang Bin, author of the paper and researcher with Southeast Asian Biodiversity Research Center under the CAS.

The scientists from the center and forestry bureau of Pu'er city in Southwest China's Yunnan province discovered the plant during a field survey.

A paper on the finding co-authored by Yang was published in the Nordic Journal of Botany in late December.

Currently, there are fewer than 50 individual plants of the new species in three localities in Yunnan. It has been designated a critically endangered species according to the classification by the World Conservation Union.

There are about 500 Primula species in the world. They are native to the temperate northern hemisphere and high altitude areas.

"The new species was found at a relatively low altitude area in south Yunnan this time. This enriches the public knowledge of the geographical distribution and diversity of this flowering plant," said Yang.

Yang also added that the new species needs immediate protection and study.

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