This book is the first to profile the unique epiphytic plant communities found in Singapore. The canopies of tropical trees are often festooned with luxuriant masses of delicate ferns, orchids and mistletoes; these veritable aerial gardens are one of the most biodiverse habitats on the planet. Yet, despite their prevalence in tropical urban landscapes, many of these fascinating aerial plants remain unappreciated and misunderstood.
The first section of this book provides a concise scientific introduction to the biology of epiphytes and mistletoes, including their taxonomy, life-cycles, adaptive strategies and interactions with their hosts and arboreal fauna. Biology students will appreciate the clear and systematic treatise of the natural history of these two groups of aerial plants, while horticulturalists will benefit from the balanced discussion on suitable management approaches for these plants.
The second section serves as a field guide for identifying all of the common epiphytes and mistletoes found in Singapore. Copious illustrations of both vegetative and fertile characters are provided to enable nature lovers and plant hobbyists to confidently identify all the common species, including epiphytic ferns, orchids, hoyas, dischidias, rubiaceous ant-plants and mistletoes. We hope that landscape architects and private gardeners will also find in this section plant selection ideas for more sustainable greening initiatives, and be inspired to further explore the substantial aesthetic and conservation values of these charming plants.