Senin, 03 Maret 2008

The Discovery of Rafflesia schadenbergiana in Central Mindanao

Contact Information
Julie F. Barcelona, Ph.D.
Philippine National Herbarium (PNH)
National Museum of the Philippines
P. Burgos St., Manila, PHILIPPINES
P.O. Box 2659
Office Tel. (632) 522-5846

Measuring up to 80 cm in diameter, Rafflesia schadenbergiana, locally known as bó-o by the Bagobo tribe of Mindanao, is the largest flower of the Philippines and the third largest flower in the world. After its first discovery on the lower slopes of Mt. Apo in 1882 during an expedition led by Schadenberg and Koch, this rare treasure of Mindanao was not encountered again until Pascal Lays, a Belgian biologist, reported a population of R. schadenbergiana in South Cotabato Province in 1994. Recently, a new population has been found in Central Mindanao about 150 kilometers NNW of the locality where this species has first been found about 125 years ago. This population of R. schadenbergiana is unfortunately critically endangered, because it relies on a single Tetrastigma plant (the obligate host of Rafflesia species) found in a kaingin margin outside of the buffer zone of a protected area. The Rafflesia population is composed of several senescent flowers, buds, and fruits. Because of the vulnerability of this population to extinction, concerted conservation plan by the DENR, LGUs, scientists, and the local people should immediately be drafted.

Ongoing Projects

  • Pictorial Guide to Philippine Ferns and Fern Allies
  • Regional/Island Surveys of the Ferns and Fern Allies in the Philippines
  • Electronic Databasing of Philippine fern collections in world herbaria
  • Collection and Conservation Status of Philippine Endemic Ferns and Fern Allies
  • Studies on Philippine Rafflesia
Angiopteris palmiformis and Rafflesia speciosa


  • Barcelona, J.F., P.B. Pelser, A.M. Tagtag, R.G. Dahonog & A.P. Lilangan. In press. The rediscovery of Rafflesia schadenbergiana Göpp. ex Hieron. (Rafflesiaceae). Flora Malesiana Bulletin.
  • Barcelona, J.F., P.B. Pelser & M.O. Cajano. 2007. Rafflesia banahaw (Rafflesiaceae), a new species from Luzon, Philippines. Blumea 52: 345-350.
  • Barcelona, J. F., Cajano, M. O. & A. S. Hadsall. 2006. Rafflesia baletei, another new Rafflesia (Rafflesiaceae) from the Philippines. Kew Bull. 61(2): 231-237.
  • Barcelona, J. F., N. E. Dolotina, G. S. Madroñero, W. G. Granert & D. D. Sopot. 2006. The ferns and fern allies of the karst forests of Bohol Island, Philippines. Amer. Fern J. 96(1): 1-20.
  • Barcelona, J. F. 2005. Noteworthy fern discoveries in the Philippines at the turn of the 21st Century. Fern Gaz.17(3): 139-146. Proceedings of the international symposium on the Ferns for the 21st Century held at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Scotland. 12-16 July 2004.
  • Barcelona, J. F. 2004. Collection and conservation status of pteridophytes in Panay Island, Philippines. Philipp. Scient. 41:57-73.
  • Barcelona, J. F. 2003. The Taxonomy and ecology of the pteridophytes of Mt. Iraya & vicinity, Batan Island, Batanes Province, Northern Philippines, in Pteridology in the New Millenium (Chandra and Srivastava, eds). Kluwer Academy Publishers. The Netherlands, 299-325.
  • Barcelona, J. F. 2003. Preliminary report on the ferns and fern allies (pteridophytes) of Mt. Bali-it, Balbalasang-Balbalan National Park, Kalinga, Northern Luzon, Philippines. Sylvatrop: The Technical Journal of Philippine Ecosystems and Natural Resources 13(1&2): 81-92.
  • Barcelona, J. F. and E. S. Fernando. 2002. A new species of Rafflesia (Rafflesiaceae) from Panay Island, Philippines. Kew Bull. 57: 647-651.
  • Barcelona, J. F. 2002. Philippine pteridophyte collections as a resource for conservation planning. Proceedings of the “International Symposium on the Fern Flora Worldwide: Threats and Responses” sponsored by the British Pteridological Society and IUCN- Species Survival Commission.” Fern Gaz. 16(6, 7 & 8): 307-312.
  • Barcelona, J. F. & M. G. Price. 1999. A new Philippine Goniophlebium. Fern Gaz. 15(7). 261-264.
  • Barcelona, J. F. Hernaez, B. & M. G. Price. 1996. Philippine Schizaea. Asia Life Sciences 5(1): 27-34.

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