A paper published in in a journal, Botanica Orientalis (2011 issue) by Adhikari, YP and Fischer, A., studied distribution pattern of the epiphytic orchid, Rhynchostylis retusa (L.) Blume with respect to site haracteristics and host conditions and type and intensity of land use in Kathmandy valley, Nepal.
The study found that R. retusa was not a host-specific orchid species. It was found on different host tree species. However, Ficus religiosa was the most common host species and there was weak correlation between R. retusa occurrence and microclimate condition. R. retusa, to a certain degree, preferred light intensity of 40-80% of full sun light, rough bark with pH around 6.5 and bark with a wide range of water holding capacity. The distribution pattern of R. retusa was influenced by certain types of land use. The probability to find R. retusa was highest in forest patches and parks and lowest in agricultural and dense populated area. The study concluded that to improve the population size of R. retusa, trees (mainly Alnus nepalensis, Ficus religiosa and Schima wallichii) should be planted in areas where the orchid species is recently missing. To download full paper click here.