The ambitious goal of this book is to make known the spectacular orchids living in our country. The compilation of photographs of more than 150 species of Cuba’s orchids will allow those who are not regular visitors to regions where these wonders live, or those who do not notice many of these species due to their small size, to enjoy the beauty of this group of plants, a genuine treasure of the Cuban flora.
When someone delves into the exciting world of orchids, simple observation is not enough. This is why we include basic information on how to recognize and where to look for the species you will find in this book. We describe where and how the orchids live, how the flowering responds to the diverse environmental factors, and which mechanisms they use, even sometimes with very specialized flowers, to ensure pollination.
The excellent photos speak louder than words about the characteristics of each flower. Accordingly, the descriptions focus on the less obvious parts of the plants rather than on the the flowers and their colours. There is also an Appendix which includes an updated list of all the species of orchids that have been found in Cuba; the flowering season for those with confirmed phenological data; and their distribution in the five regions they are grouped, according to our criteria, as later explained in this book. A total of 305 species are recognized in Cuba, with 30.4 percent endemism. This figure varies and, as studies progress, many species become synonyms of others. Also, it is known that there are many new species yet to be described, above all, of the Lepanthes genus, estimated at about 15.
Finally, to make this work more complete, we include a brief Glossary of the main terms used in this book, terms which could cause some doubt, or simply be unfamiliar to the new orchid enthusiast.
Edición bilingüe, castellano-inglés, con las imágenes, nunca antes tomadas, de las bellas y poco conocidas orquídeas cubanas. Con una detallada y actualizada información sobre las mismas.