Sunday, January 14, 2018
Oncidium altissimum [Jacq.] Swartz 1800, a close up of a flower from a plant growing in the Rio Abajo forest, Puerto Rico.
This orchid was one of the commonest epiphytic orchid in the Rio Abajo forest, Arecibo, Puerto Rico. However it is unclear how many plants survived hurricane Maria. Most plants grew high up the trees in branches that were close to the canopy, where they could get dappled sunlight. After the hurricane, the plants that remained on the trees were severely sunburned because without the canopy to filter the sun, they were exposed all day to the harsh strength of the the tropical sun. Unfortunately so many trees were broken, brought down or grievously damaged that checking on how the plants in the forest are doing right now would be a difficult and dangerous thing to do. Hopefully in the future I will be able to check on how the plants that I had observed fared after the hurricane.