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Plants in the Wild: AGS Bhutan 2009: Primula

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Started by: Margaret Thorne

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Contribution from Margaret Thorne 27 March 2010, 11:30top / bottom of page

Imagine a day in the mountains, a new campsite reached, cheerful banter over a delicious meal and now it is time for the plant session.

We normally go over those we have seen on a day by day basis, but perhaps a different approach is more appropriate online. So, here are my thoughts and observations on the primulas we found during our expedition which took place from 20th June ? 11th July 2009. Locations for each species will be available on the Expedition Plant List once identifications have all been completed. In the meantime any contributions and feedback are warmly welcomed.

Primula alpicola: similar to P. sikkimensis ssp hopeana but distinguished by the shape of the leaf (blade base is cordate and petiole unwinged).

P. atrodentata: short stem, white-eyed flowers and blackish sepal lobes

This one does not look quite right for P. atrodentata ? any ideas what it might be?

P.denticulata often has red at the base of the petiole and flowers without white eyes. It is relatively straightforward to tell apart from P. atrodentata when the leaves are large (like garden ones), but more compact forms are much more difficult.

The following plant should be too tall to be P. atrodentata, but has its characteristic white eye and blackish sepal-lobes (though in my experience, P. denticulata does too).

We may also have seen P. erythrocarpa which is apparently very similar to P. denticulata.

P. bellidifolia: this can be difficult to tell apart from P. umbratilis, but it does not have the latter's funnel shaped flowers or more lobed leaves.

This plant has some orange in the eye and a hint of P.capitata about it - perhaps a cross with P. bellidifolia. Here are more detailed photographs of P.bellidifolia for comparison.

P.bracteosa?: The shape of this leaf resembles the picture taken by Sandra Rice in May 2007 of P. bracteosa (see earlier posting), so I have provisionally labelled it as this species (found near Taktshang Monastery).

P. calderiana

P. capitata


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