The genus Epirixanthes contains seven mycoheterotrophic species. All species grow in tropical rain forests in Southeast Asia.


Classification: Eudicots, Fabales

Genera with mycoheterotrophic species: Epirixanthes

Diversity: Polygalaceae comprise approximately 21 genera and 1,000 species. All six species of Epirixanthes are fully mycoheterotrophic.

Distribution and habitat: The family of Polygalaceae is cosmopolitan, with its center of diversity in tropical and subtropical areas. Epirixanthes is widely distributed in tropical Asia, including India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, China, and the Solomon Islands.

Fungi: Epirixanthes mycoheterotrophs grow on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (Glomeromycota).

Fun fact: While Epirixanthes species usually have reddish stems, color variants that are entirely yellow are known for a few species (see also pictures below).