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One of every seven flowering plants on Earth is an orchid. Orchidaceae is the second most widely distributed plant family, yet remains one of the least understood. Here are profiles of 600 key species, complete with full taxonomic and phylogenic details, captured in exquisite photographs and representing the remarkable diversity, complexity, and beauty of these extraordinary and beguiling plants.
Mark Chase is Director of the Jodrell Laboratory at Kew Gardens. He is also visiting professor at the School of Biological Sciences, University of London, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of London.
Maarten Christenhusz is a Dutch botanist who has worked for the Finnish Museum of Natural History in Helsinki, the Natural History Museum in London, and Kew Gardens, on a variety of taxonomic projects, their subjects ranging from ferns to tulips.
Preface author Tom Mirenda is the Orchid Collection Specialist at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., where he cares for and curates a diverse collection of orchid species and hybrids from around the world. He frequently lectures on orchid ecology and conservation in the US and abroad, and is a columnist for Orchids, the magazine of the American Orchid Society.