Epiphytes, plant life which do not you want surface

Epiphytes, plant life which do not you want surface

We frequently pay attention to one to epiphytes herbs live on the air and you may it appears to be so it, because they don’t nearly you want floor growing. It build into trunks taking advantage of his height searching of the energy source far wanted into the warm forests: sunlight. In this post i define epiphytes adjustment in addition to most common epiphytic categories of such incredible vegetation.

The fresh epiphytes survive almost every other plant life in the place of parasitize them or ruining some of its organs otherwise features. Epiphytes benefit from other plants formations once the actual help to help you grow into the brand new shaded tree cover, using the trunks and you may branches regarding older woods to arrive a lot more top and you may catch the sun. Epiphytes never ever touching a floor; he’s modified to call home the air!

• The capacity to capture water and nourishment throughout the sky, the fresh new precipitation additionally the couple of soil otherwise natural debris which can stay static in the fresh new trees trunk area in which they supply.

Whether or not epiphyte plants rely on its place of get their diet, sometimes they develop really you to definitely overburden its servers and you will prevent up killing the assistance. This is the matter of specific Ficus (Moraceae), named “strangler fig” one develop aerial roots doing most other woods versus allowing them to develop.

Due to the epiphytes share we can point out that warm precipitation forest try structured when you look at the a vertical gradient along side woods trunks, in which we discover organism variety planned according to its length to a floor. Epiphytes was largely responsible for the really rich biodiversity that makes warm rainforests probably the most cutting-edge ecosystems on earth. Along with getting additional layers from plants together height, epiphytes provide security and you may nutrition to different insects and you may amphibians; which fool around with liquids stored in the newest epiphytes leaves due to the fact a coverage or nest from the refuge produced in the exact middle of the fresh trunk.

Epiphytes are observed generally in exotic rainforests, where dozens epiphytes has actually filed using one tree. But not, inside the moderate environments if not deserts we can together with located drought knowledgeable epiphytic variety.

Currently, whenever twenty-five,000 variety are epiphytes. Most frequent and you can identified epiphytes was Bromeliaceae and Orchidaceae families and you can ferns. Epiphytism provides looked from time to time during the development therefore we discover advice in other tropical spermatophytes (herbs that have seed products and trunk) such as for example Ericaceae, Gesneriaceae, Melastomataceae, Moraceae and you may Piperaceae and also in seedless vegetation (lichens, mosses and you may liver) regarding temperate climates.


Orchids feel the large number of epiphytic around the globe, having 20 exotic epiphytic genera. New genus with far epiphytes species number try Bulbophyllum (1800) and you will Dendrobium (1200). Brand new genus out of epiphytic orchids Phalaenopsis (60 varieties) is grown in the world for the beauty. In fact, many vegetation used in indoor gardening try epiphytes while they has few nutrients and liquid standards.

Certainly orchids, i wished to focus on a varieties noted for a separate need: the fresh new vanilla extract (Vanilla planifolia), indigenous to Mexico and you may Main The united states, in which it absolutely was ate that have cocoa. It actually was brought in so you’re able to Reunion isle and you may Madagascar (currently earliest world brands) by the Spaniards when they discovered their unbelievable flavor. The fresh new vanilla extract crops imitate their needless to say expand to your trees, and you may vanilla extract vegetation aren’t person into the ground, but into the logs. This new a portion of the vanilla bush which is ate ‘s the nonetheless younger fruit, shortly after a treating processes.

Orchids get one of the most extremely state-of-the-art pollination possibilities regarding the plant world, with many cases of monospecific coevolution systems regarding pests and you can hummingbirds. Vanilla extract is another analogy, as it’s just pollinated of the North american country native bees and hummingbirds, therefore pollination doesn’t can be found naturally throughout the cultivation section and you may it needs to be carried out by hands. Normally, female and kids nonetheless habit this handmade method pollinating each vanilla rose to obtain their beloved good fresh fruit. Actually, vanilla extract ‘s the earth’s most costly collect, from the weight.


Bromeliaceae is sold with over 3,one hundred thousand neotropical varieties, several epiphytic. One particular varieties rich genera was Tillandsia (450), Pitcairnia (250), Vriesia (200), Aechmea (150) and Puya (150). New will leave out of bromeliads expand within the rosette assisting the newest accumulation out of liquids. The new cultivation regarding bromeliads has been blocked inside Brazil (where i discover 43% out of Bromeliaceae local kinds) because of the ignorance, whilst try believed that which liquid favored the fresh breeding out of Aedes aegypti, mosquito transmitter regarding Zika, dengue and chikungunya trojan. Actually, bromeliads features secondary compounds one avoid the growth on the mosquito egg and you may larvae while the h2o when you look at the renders creates a beneficial micro-environment you to definitely adds up nourishment you to supply most other bugs, amphibians and local birds which can help assaulting they. Bromeliaceae plants keeps bright tone and are followed by flashy bracts including attracting the eye off pollinators, particularly hummingbirds and bats. Many bromeliads can be used since attractive herbs, specifically Tillandsia and you can Guzmania.

Epiphytes from temperate weather

Probably one of the most incredible epiphytic ferns ‘s the staghorn fern (Platycerium bifurcatum), commonly used because the an attractive bush. The new staghorn fern was native to Australia but is utilized in all of the tropical section useful farming. That it fern increases a few leaf shapes: the initial kind is actually kidney-molded and will not make spores; their setting will be to point to the trunk area. These actually leaves eventually acquire a tan color bdsm and you will form a bottom from which another style of will leave expand; which can be fertile which make spores. New fruitful departs was a lot of time and bifurcated and will grow up so you can ninety cm enough time. The latest spores associated with the fern are produced from the departs top one acquire a beneficial velvet appearance.

Within moderate woods, typically the most popular epiphytes try lichens. Among lichens, we would like to emphasize Usnea or old’s people beard. It’s a cosmopolitan genus expanding into conifers and you will deciduous woods. This grayish fruticose lichen grow once the curtain shape clinging off trees. Curiously, there clearly was a types of epiphytic bromeliads you to reminds Usnea while the they express that the development setting. Their titled Language moss (Tillandsia usneoides) but is none an excellent moss or lichen, however, a great bromeliad with very small simply leaves increasing chained on crushed. Neither was Foreign language but stays in America.

Usnea lichen broadening once the an excellent curtain into temperate weather (left) and you may Tillandsia usneoides away from tropical environments (right): Source: Barres Fotonatura and Wikipedia.

The brand new epiphytes will still be little known because the climbing techniques in warm rainforest only have become arranged has just so we nonetheless recognized an effective absolutely nothing regarding compared to carnivorous otherwise parasitic plants. The majority are nonetheless to check out!

Smith N., Mori S. A good., Henderson, A., Stevenson D. W. Heald, S. V. 2004. Blooming Vegetation of the Neotropics. Nj-new jersey, USA: Brand new York Organic Backyard, Princeton university drive.

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