Khaosokia caricoides is a genus and species of the sedge family (Cyperaceae) that was first discovered in 2001 in Khao Sok National Park, southern Thailand.
It was initially overlooked as being a common species in the genus Carex until further collections were made in 2002.
It was a surprise to find a completely new genus in Asia, because the generic diversity of sedges in that part of the world is quite low.
It occurs on limestone cliffs that are only accessible by boat - the area was flooded in the 1980s to form a reservoir.
Ironically, although the flooding resulted in the loss of many hectares of forest, it led to the discovery of Khaosokia cariocoides - flooding allowed access to previously inaccessible cliffs, and brought the plant within reach of collectors.
The species was formally described by David Simpson, Kongkanda Chayamarit and John Parnell in 2005.
This sedge is found scattered in crevices on sunny limestone cliffs, about 5m above water level, at altitudes of 60–80m.
Khaosokia caricoides is a robust perennial with many drooping leaves and flowering stems. Find out more about the appearance of this unusual sedge.
Find out what little we know about the biology of this plant.
Khaosokia caricoides is known from only one locality in the Khao Sok National Park, Thailand. Little is known about its ecological requirements, but climate change leading to reduced rainfall may affect its survival. Find out more.
Get reference material for Khaosokia caricoides.
Khaosokia caricoides: male inflorescence.© Rachun Pooma
Khaosokia cariocoides in habitat on limestone cliff.© Stuart Lindsay
Khaosokia caricoides in habitat on limestone cliff.© Stuart Lindsay
Collecting Khaosokia caricoides.© Stuart Lindsay
David A Simpson
Assistant Keeper for Systematics
Herbarium, Library, Art and Archives
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
"This is a totally unexpected new genus in a challenging but fascinating family of plants."
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Plant species in which the male and female plants are sexually distinct – the reproductive organs occur on different individuals.
The outer envelope of a flower, consisting of either the calyx or the corolla, or both.