JACKSONVILLE, Ala. (WIAT) — A biology professor at Jacksonville State University has discovered a new species of bamboo that is native to Alabama.
Jimmy Triplett, curator of the JSU Herbarium, recently uncovered the Arundinaria alabamensis, or Tallapoosa Cane, writing about the discovery in Phytaxa, a science journal. According to JSU, the plant is the state’s 31st endemic vascular plant and the fourth species of native bamboo in the country.
Triplett was previously involved in the discovery of Arundinaria appalachiana, better known as Hill Cane, which was also found in Alabama.
“Our native bamboos are closely related to bamboos in East Asia and highlight an interesting distribution shared with plants like magnolias, dogwoods and ginsengs, which is explained by prehistoric land bridges between continents,” Triplett said in a statement released by JSU.
According to Triplett, this newly discovered species of bamboo species will lead to a better understanding on the history of native bamboos in the southeast.
The JSU Herbarium houses over 70,000 plant specimens.