Scientists from the central coastal province of Khanh Hoa have suggested preserving the rare population of a Camellia species which were found in the local mountainous region in 2013.

A group of researchers from the Bidoup Nui Ba National Park in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong and the Da Lat University found the species in Hon Giao Mountain Pass, which links Khanh Hoa’s coastal city of Nha Trang with Lam Dong’s resort city of Da Lat.

This kind of tree was believed to have become extinct in the years since it was first discovered in Khanh Hoa province by German botanist M.Krempf in 1912.

In 1942, based on Krempf’s findings, the French scientist F. Ganepain gave the tree its scientific name Thea krempfii Gagnep .

In the middle of 2013, researchers from Southern Institute of Ecology and officers from the local Department of Forest Management accidentally uncovered an individual from this rare species on Nui Ba (Lady) mountain with no flowers, according to Khanh Hoa’s Department of Science and Technology.

In November that year, they found this plant at Son Thai Mountain in the local Khanh Vinh district, which is 6km from the Hon Ba Nature Reserve.

By collecting the samples of the species and counting flowers and seeds, the researchers identified it was the Camellia Krempf tree first discovered over a century ago.

Camellia Krempfii is a small tree, 8m high, and its flowers have a diameter of 5 to 7 cm. Researchers proposed that its rare genome be enlisted in the Red Book for further studying and multiplication.-VNA