Plants of Forest

Endemic Plants of Amami

Examples of endemic species

Amami plants number unusually high in both endemic species and northernmost species limits: 40 and 150, respectively.

The majority of plants in these categories live in the mountain ranges of the south-central areas.

Forests of Amami integrate all of the animals and plants that live there to create what may be called a rare ecosystem.

Amami’s deep forests and the mountain streams cascading from a central basin form plant colonies and communities of landing plants seen nowhere else.

Rhododendron latoucheae var. amamiense
Subcanopy tree of the Ericacae family that lives along mountain streams in the forest. Large, white blooms take on a light pink color at the beginning of spring.

Lilium alexandrae
Lilies that live in rocky stretches and on cliffs.
Large, aromatic white flowers appear during the rainy season.

Chinese persimmon (Veronicastrum liukiuense)
Perennial herb that grows at forest edges and other sunny locations.
Blooms in autumn with white and pink blossoms.

Arisaema heterocephalum subsp. heterocephalum
Perennial herb that grows on the forest floor. Distributed in Amami Oshima and Tokunoshima.

Polystichum obai  / Small fern that grows in mossy rocky areas along mountain streams and cliffs.

Nertera yamashitae / Grows on rocks that moss along mountain streams. Blooms with white flowers that are large compared to its extremely small leaves. Discovered in 1995.

Shortia rotundifolia f. amamiana / Perennial herb that blooms white blossoms in summer.
Grows on rocks.

Vaccinium amamianum / Adheres to aged trees in wet forests. Flowers in small, light pink blooms in the rainy season.

Scientific name (plant) Download (pdf:939KB)

Photos / ©Futoshi Hamada
Captions / HORIZON Editorial Office

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