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New species of dragon tree discovered in Thailand

Last Updated: Saturday, October 19, 2013 - 11:41

Bangkok: Scientists have discovered a new species of dragon tree in Thailand.

The newly discovered dragon tree species `Dracaena kaweesakii` is characterised by its extensive branching and can reach 12 m in both height and crown diameter.

It has soft sword-shaped leaves with white edges and cream flowers with bright orange filaments, all highly distinctive features.

Dracaena kaweesakii is a relative of the Canary Island dragon tree Dracaena draco. It is an ecologically important species found only on limestone hills and mountains that are often associated with Buddhist temples in Thailand.

Dracaena kaweesakii is extracted from the wild for use in horticulture in Thailand and is one of the more popular species due to its extensive branching.

Dracaena species in general are thought by Thai people to bring luck to households that have them, hence their popularity.

The discovery was published in the journal Phytokeys.

First Published: Saturday, October 19, 2013 - 11:41
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