Cotoneaster humilis Dunn, 384 1924 (syn: Cotoneaster gilgitensis Klotz; Pyrus humilis (Dunn) M. F. Fay & Christenh.);
Pakistan, Jammu & Kashmir, India (Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh) as per Catalogue of Life;
Here with my first (of many) offerings of Cotoneaster and my first posting of my own images.
Hope members will not be too overwhelmed by the 11 images etc. but hopefully this will inspire the serious photographers amongst them to get snapping more images from 2017 onwards and recognise the value of additional images covering habitat, habit and close-ups. Would be good to have images of the flowers added.
A ruler in some of the images is useful for many genera including Cotoneaster as exact dimensions can be of significance taxonomically – a ruler would have helped with the images of the Delphinium we are currently looking at.
Not all rulers will come out well on photos (this was ‘borrowed’ from my youngest son) and it is easy to leave them behind in the field, so carry a couple of spares during each trip (cannot always purchase replacements when in remote valleys).
My entry to accompanying the images attached below is as follows:
Cotoneaster humilis Dunn. (syn. C.gilgitensis G. Klotz) recorded from Pakistan, Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. The type specimen was collected by Dr R Stewart from near Sonamarg in 1921 – the holotype is at Kew; whilst the isotype is at Dehra Dun.
Stewart (1972) recorded this from Sonamarg & Pahlgam plus the ascent from Deosai to Burzil in Pakistan @ 3-4000m.
This is not currently an accepted name in ‘The Plant List’ but Fryer & Hylmo are revising the genus.
The images were taken by myself in October in the lower Miyah Nullah, Lahoul, Himachal Pradesh.
Nice images revealing details.
This species is also known in Uttarakhand and its distribution indicate it as a species more common in trans-Himalayan arid alpines. Osmaston (1927) which is one of the authentic work on arborescent flora of Uttarakhand, recorded it from Rimkim near Chor Hoti Pass to Tibet. He also states that it may be found as lower down to 7500 feet in Himachal Pradesh.
Probably not collected from Uttarakhand in last few decades.
Hope some of us also photograph flowers of this species.
Hopefully the images will help botanists and plant enthusiasts to “get their eye in” with this and other Cotoneaster species – a much neglected genus. Though as you say, C.humilis is most likely to be found in districts bordering Tibet.
The specimens of Cotoneaster humilis I located in Miyah Nullah, Lahoul were growing amongst Iris kemaonensis and young plants of what I
took to be Juniperus macropoda at the edge of fields of Inula racemosa and on a smaller-scale Saussurea lappa.
Knowing altitudinal range, ecology/habitat details and associated species helps locate promising places to look out for particular species – plus brings the plants alive (as do good photos).
Basic check-lists (if reliable) and floras with lots of botanical descriptions are useful in their ways but to understand each species we need to know its habitat requirements and genuine abundance or rarity. This can only come from field observations and now digital images undertaken by active and knowledgeable plant enthusiasts (whether amateur or professional). These things bring plants alive to me and are more likely to engage a greater number of people that old-fashioned purely ‘botanical’ written floras. We are in an age when close-up images allow us to understand much better. There is still very much a need for pressed specimens and herbaria but they must embrace what digital photography can offer.
Crude estimates of ‘rarity’ based on minimal surveys are misleading and need to be challenged. One cannot judge if something is genuinely
rare sat in an office and to proclaim a species as ‘Rare & Endangered’ when it is no such thing is very wrong. What about the species which are actually rare – they are being abandoned…..
As mentioned previously, in the UK we are blessed with ‘The Botanical Society of Britain & Ireland’ (BSBI) which brings together both professional botanists (some do not realise that many botanists do not specialise in identifying plants in general) and keen amateurs, though most of the amateurs soon become of ‘professional’ standard with their input invaluable. In no country are there sufficient professional botanists to survey a country’s flora well – they need help. Even if they are enthusiastic and active, other duties mean they cannot spend all their time observing wild plants. So it is impossible to understand a flora well just with botanists working at Institutions.
This google group and the sterling efforts of … help to bring together a similar mix.
Those of us with a botanical background should always be mindful of not intimidating those who are beginners botany-wise (no matter what their background). We were all beginners once and nobody knows it all – the field of botany is so vast.
Everyone appreciates being made to feel welcome and know that their efforts are appreciated. This is likely to encourage them to do more, which is what is wanted as there is plenty to do.
May I thank all those existing members who have sent messages acknowledging my contribution to-date – I am still one of the “new boys”….
Thanks, … I don’t know if it’s correct or not, Catalogue of Life gives it as a syn. of Cotoneaster integerrimus Medik., while as per The Plant List Ver. 1.1, it is unresolved.
May be you can better clarify.
I can only share what is within COTONEASTERS by Fryer & Hylmo.
Inevitably, there will be differences of taxonomic opinion/treatment. My present understanding is that Fryer & Hylmo have the most expertise. I cannot judge, not being a Cotoneaster specialist (though have field experience of quite a number of species) nor taxonomist how reliable Fryer’s research is.
According to the book, Cotoneaster integerrimus Medikus is found in Central Europe and belongs to Series Cotoneaster. A collection was made in Slovakia in 1990.
The only synonym given for C.humilis Dunn is C.gilgitensis G.Klotz – it belongs to Section Acuminati.