Peru is endowed with a rich variety of plant species, some of which are rare and endemic, and and even under great threat of extinction. Some of these plants are a key tourist attraction for Peru. Being part of Peru’s natural resources, the government has established protected areas in a bid to conserve and preserve the Peruvian biodiversity. Most of these plants are found on either the slopes of the Andes, in the highlands, or in the Amazon Rainforest.
Machu Picchu Bamboo (Chusquea delicatula)
The Machu Picchu bamboo is a highly rare vining bamboo found in the mountains of Peru near the famous Incan city of Machu Picchu. The bamboo has a delicate texture, long slender branches, and small delicate leaves. The bamboo is highly arching and grows to heights of 8 to 12 feet this rare plant faces a threat from the rapid deforestation as well as increased tourist activities in Machu Picchu.
Amazon Lily (Eucharis × grandiflora)
The Amazon Lily is a low growing bulbous plant with star-shaped clusters and sweet-scented white flowers that are borne in groups of four. The leaves are large and spectacular with a prominent corolla. The plant mainly flowers in the spring with flowering occurring twice a year sometimes. The Amazon Lily does well in shaded areas and becomes dormant at temperatures that are near freezing.
Peruvian Sundew (Drosera peruensis)
This sundew is found in the Pasco region of Peru in scrub lands or amidst white sandstone. The Peruvian sundew is a carnivorous plant with red as its primary color. The plant has an herbaceous stem, red leaves that are hairy on the top and smooth on the underside with a nearly round leaf blade and red or white flowers that appear in an inflorescence. Flowering mainly occurs in October. The flower has some medicinal properties and is also used for ornamental purposes.
Peruvian Wild Tomato (Solanum huaylasense)
The Peruvian wild tomato is a perennial herb endemic to Peru with a woody base, and extends up to one meter in height with a stem of 7 to 10 millimeters at the base. The plant has minutely pubescent bright green leaves and an inflorescence of 8 to 32 flowers. The flowers are minute at about 1 millimeter while the fruits range from 1 to 1.4 centimeters. The flower is mainly found in altitudes of about 940 to 3000 meters on rocky slopes in the Ancash area.
Abra Malaga Mountain Fern (Moranopteris inaccessa)
The Abra Malaga mountain fern is a rare grammitid fern found on the Abra Malaga cliff in the Urubamba mountain ranges of Peru. It was discovered in 2012. Its fronds are pinnate with pinnate veins. The fern is found in elevations of more than 4427 meters amidst Polylepis pepei forests. The fern has elongated and highly divided leaves.
Conservation of Peruvian Flora
The Peruvian boneset sunflower, Peruvian onion, Cajamarca dogbane, Tayuya, and Totora are other notable plant species found in Peru which also face threats to their existence. These threats have arisen due to the advancement of agriculture, selective logging, hunting, deforestation for road construction, and changes in land use methods. Among the conservation efforts made towards preserving the natural biodiversity in Peru include implementation of the National Biodiversity Strategy, identification and demarcation of agro-biodiversity zones and setting up of the Aichi Biodiversity targets for 2020.