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Cryptobotany

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Title: Cryptobotany  
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Cryptobotany

Depiction of a man-eating tree from Central America.

Cryptobotany is the study of various exotic plants which are not believed to exist by the scientific community, but which exist in myth, literature or unsubstantiated reports. Folk legend and ethnic usage of plants, often as interdisciplinary research, is presented and developed for an unknown species, in the hope of allowing those species to be collected or adequately identified. Any researcher or writer can identify himself or herself as a cryptobotanist; the field is surveyed within cryptozoological or other journals, or with varying degrees of skepticism as a protoscience.[1]

Many plants remain undiscovered or are yet to be classified, however cryptobotany usually focuses on fantastical plants believed to have harmful or therapeutic interactions with people. Sources of data may be secondary or scant; reports may be plausible or outlandish.[2]

Man eating plants, most frequently inhabiting the jungles of Africa in popular fiction, may have been based on initial reports of plants that could trap and kill mammals, such as Nepenthes rajah.[3] However, there are unconfirmed reports, primarily from Latin America, that allege the existence of still-undiscovered species of large carnivorous plants, according to British cryptozoologist Karl Shuker's 2003 book The Beasts That Hide From Man.[4]

See also


Notes

  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Phillipps, A. 1988. .Nepenthes rajahA second record of rats as prey in  PDF (203 KiB) Carnivorous Plant Newsletter 17(2): 55.
  4. ^

Bibliography

  • Terence McKenna, 1992 - Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge - A Radical History of Plants, Drugs, and Human Evolution (Bantam) ISBN 0-553-37130-4
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