Corsiaceae are an intriguing family of mycoheterotrophic plants from the rain forests of southern South America (Arachnitis), Australasia (Corsia), and China (Corsiopsis).
Classification: Monocots, Liliales
Genera: Arachnitis, Corsia, Corsiopsis
Diversity: Corsiaceae comprise three genera and 27 species. All species are fully mycoheterotrophic. The largest genus is Corsia (25 species).
Distribution and habitat: Corsiaceae have a remarkable disjunct distribution, occurring in tropical and subantarctic South America (Arachnitis), China (Corsiopsis), and tropical Australasia (Corsia).
Fungi: Corsiaceae grow on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.
Fun fact: Mycoheterotrophic plants usually grow in forests, but Arachnitis has been recorded on the treeless East Falkland Island, “growing in sand amongst rocks on an eroded sandstone ridge”