"Of the 109 Hoya species recorded in the country, 39 species and 3 subspecies are found in Quezon province," team leader Jennifer Conda said.
Botanists discover new Hoya subspecies in Quezon
(Philstar.com) - January 1, 2019 - 2:00pm

MANILA, Philippines — A new subspecies of Hoya—waxplant or waxflower—was recently discovered in Quezon, by a team of botanists of the  Department of Science and Technology-Forest Products Research and Development Institute.

Hoya, also known as waxplant, is found across Asia, especially in countries with tropical climates like India, China, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Indonesia.

The subspecies of Hoya discovered called “escobinae Kloppenb”  is the newest addition to the plant family. It was found by DOST botanists Jennifer Conda, Fernando Pitargue Jr., and Dr. Ramiro Escobin.

Conda, who led the team, explained how they discovered the subspecies: “Our team collected cuttings of the plant from the Quezon Protected Landscape in 2012. Immediately after the first flowers bloomed, we sent samples for examination to Dr. Dale Kloppenburg, a renowned Hoya expert from the United States,” she said.

The botanist added: “He then confirmed that it was a new subspecies, which showed several similarities with Hoya meliflua Blanco ex Merr. but with some notable differences. Results were published in Hoya New, a publication devoted to studies about Hoya, and listed in the [International Plant Names Index].”

She described the calyx lobes (sepals) as tongue-like and long, while the petals are elongated and have a serrated edge.

“Of the 109 Hoya species recorded in the country, 39 species and 3 subspecies are found in Quezon province. It is no wonder that another subspecies was uncovered in the same area,” explained Conda.

Hoyas are known as evergreen perennial creepers or vines that can grow attached to trees or on rocky areas.

In 2013, a team of biologists from the National Museum of the Philippines discovered the existence of rare plant Rafflesia Manillana in Aurora province. — with Ryan Macasero

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