New Orchids Species Discovered Near Machu Picchu
Three new species of the orchid family are in good company at the archaeological park.
Orchid season in Peru runs during the rainy months of the year, from November to March. Adding color and fragrance to an already bursting biodiversity, Peru accounts for 10% of the world’s orchids. And just in time to bloom three new species of orchids have recently been discovered near the Inca citadel. The announcement came at a ceremony held in Cusco city.
Participating in the discovery was head of the Machu Picchu Biocultural Management Conservation program, Gustavo Ochoa; Feliciano Incahuamani Atausinchi, guard and caretaker of Machu Picchu Llaqta; and Rolando Mormontoy, Machu Picchu Inca Trail guard and caretaker at the Decentralized Directorate of Culture of Cusco (DDCC).
The names of the new species don’t exactly roll off the tongue, however they do honor the people who discovered them, as you can see here: Epidendrum Ochoae, Epidendrum Incahuamanii and Epidendrum Mormontoy. The names were chosen by scientific magazine of orchids, Icones Orchidacearum. At the ceremony the three discoverers were each given a copy of Volume 15 of the magazine.
Three-hundred registered species of orchids call the Machu Picchu Archaeological Park home, and serve a greater purpose than just beauty. It is believed in ancient times orchids were used for medicinal purposes, while to day some of the more fragrant varieties are used for perfumery or gastronomy.