Wightia speciosissima

Wightia speciosissima (D. Don) Merr., J. Arnold Arbor. 19(1): 67 1938. (syn: Gmelina siamica Mold.; Gmelina speciosissima D. Don; Wightia alpinii Craib; Wightia elliptica Merr.; Wightia gigantea Wall.; Wightia lacei Craib);   

China (Yunnan), Bhutan, India, Sikkim, Darjeeling, Nepal, N- and E-Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar [Burma] (Kachin, Shan, Rakhine, Sagaing, Mon, Magway) as per Catalogue of Life;


This tree puzzled me with its flowers and habit in the dense jungles of the Sikkim Himalaya. This tree was seen near Yuksom, on the Goechala trekking route, at around 2000m asl. It was a strange sight to see this tree-like blooming individual growing mid-way from what appeared to be Alnus nepalensis. It was like a full-fledged epiphytic tree. Later I could identify it as Wightia speciosissima because of its likeness to Paulownia. The description says it can be a tree or a hemi-epiphytic pseudo-vine. Anyway, it was a completely new sighting for me and a very interesting tree, being the only species in the genus and a new genus for me in Paulowniaceae.
Please excuse the low quality of the images as the flowers were high above.

very good. in such cases very often, if possible, I look for the fallen flowers and they give good clues and can be dissected...etc
Thank you ..., yes that's what I do as well but this time it was off the path on a steep slope and couldn't get there. 
that's ok, … easier said then done in the trek, I know
... The Arborist !!! 
You are simply Great !!! 
 



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