What interesting plants grow in Panama & Costa Rica?

kstoursJune 12, 2006

Hi. I have an assignment to write about unique plants that grow in Panama/Costa Rica. I've found some info online but am having trouble finding scientific names for some of the cool plants listed. For instance, something called hot lips or hooker's lips. A holly that occasionally changes sex that is supposedly called ocotea tenera, but I can't find that name online anywhere. Some species of orchid that resembles the form of a female wasp complete with eyes, antennae and wings. An orchid called La Putita de Noche (Little Prostitute of the Night) that smells just at night. I think that pitcher plants are also native to that area--Nepenthes Carnivorous, right?

Ideally I'd like to find more plants like these that have unique adaptations, and some photos would be great to. Can anyone direct me to web sites where I can find this stuff? Thanks much!

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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

Hi
The problem with that area is the diversity due to so many climate zones. Last I heard something like 80,000 specie of plants!! 1700 of orchids alone.. You could fill several books on just one specie.
Not sure about Carniverous plants ,Nepenthes are native to Asia.
Your only hope is to settle on one type such as orchids ,palms,ferns or maybe growth habits, such as epiphytic,lithophytic ,semi terrestrial. Even then you could only skim the surface.
gary

    Bookmark   June 13, 2006 at 6:38AM
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farmfreedom

2 percent of all the species in the world of plants and animals are from Costa Rica alone . Check conservation groups , the world wildlife fund , the chamber of commerce of Costa Rica , safaris and expeditions .If you find any interesting food plants LET ME KNOW!

    Bookmark   June 13, 2006 at 12:16PM
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kstours

Thanks, folks! Regarding Central American food plants, there's an article in the May 27 issue of New Scientist magazine (published in UK) about Maya nut trees (aka ramon, ojoche, ujuxte, masica). It's pretty cool.

The link is http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg19025531.700.html. (You'll have to subscribe to get the full article.) Or if you give me a fax number I can fax it to you. It's 2 pages.

The woman who is working to get the locals using the nut again has a website too, and it has basically all the same info. http://www.theequilibriumfund.org

Here is a link that might be useful: Maya nuts

    Bookmark   June 13, 2006 at 3:11PM
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hawaii50(z10 HI)

The scientific name of the orchid that is scented at night is Brassavola nodosa. For the names of other orchid species, you might post a query on a forum dedicated to orchids, such as the Orchid Source Forum (sorry, restricted from posting the website name).

    Bookmark   June 17, 2006 at 6:10AM
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aroidgardener(9b/central FL)

This site has 2 expedition photos, one to Panama and one to Costa Rica. Some of the photos are labeled.

Here is a link that might be useful: Black Jungle

    Bookmark   June 17, 2006 at 11:52AM
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costaricafinca

While I live in Costa Rica, and have Nepenthes'Maxima' & Nepenthes 'Alata' I don't think they are native to Costa Rica. These are two of the few plants I have actually purchased. My husband just loves them! I grow Kohleria 'bogatensis', which many 'experts' in the USA say don't grow here.
Cochlospermum vitifolium or locally known as 'Poró poró' is interesting.
I have some photos on my site.www.costaricafinca.net
Contact me from there, if you want more info.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2006 at 8:07PM
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costaricafinca

This may be the 'Hot Lips' you were inquiring about,Costus 'Hot Lips'

Here is a link that might be useful: Costus 'Hot Lips'

    Bookmark   June 26, 2006 at 2:14PM
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PuraVida(Costa Rica)

you can see some pictures of plants I have in my garden posted. if you want the scientific name of a specific one let me know...

Here is a link that might be useful: garden photo blog

    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 11:30AM
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Heathen1(10a)

pura MAN... What a WONDERFUL place! Sigh! I am surprise that you can grow a Cypress vine Ipomea quamoclit! I love them, never knew they were tropical tolerant. Oh, I am SO in tropical envy!

    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 9:03PM
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rlriffle_FL_zone10(z10 FL)

Do any of these articles/sited give the botanical (scientific) name of the "Maya nut?"

    Bookmark   July 10, 2006 at 9:18AM
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john13(Oregon z8)

puravida: Those mystery fruit on your blog look like Surinam Cherry (Eugenia uniflora).

John

Here is a link that might be useful: Surinam Cherry

    Bookmark   July 10, 2006 at 7:12PM
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PuraVida(Costa Rica)

Thanks John I'll update my blog!

Pura Vida

Here is a link that might be useful: garden photo blog

    Bookmark   July 11, 2006 at 3:19PM
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cactivoras

HI...FROM PANAMA...THAT IS RIGHT (Brassavola nodosa)is the name of that orchid...
I dont think nephente are native from Panama or Costa Rica. Here we have drosera panamensis and another carnivorus plantas...Ee have a lot of orchid and exotics plants as fruits,palms,ephifit cacti, ......

GREETINGS
FACARIELAGUILAR@GMAIL.COM

    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 12:24AM
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