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Discovering rare wild meconopsis in western China / eastern Tibet.

On a recent reconnaisance trip into the sacred peaks of Golog, a region that historically formed the heartland of the ancient Kingdom of Ling, we discovered a magnificent range of spectacular jagged peaks dotted with dozens of crystal-clear lakes. The mountains are also home to approximately 40 snow leopard, over 170 birds (including the rare Tibetan Bunting and Black-necked Crane) and hundreds of wildflowers.

Rare varieties of flower include wild Primula Melanantha (a beautiful black primula that only grows at around 4800m in just one or two inaccessible spots) and an endemic lilac lily, Meconopsis Barbiseta. Indeed it was probably the meconopsis that stole the show with seven different varieties recorded in relative abundance and, in some cases, throughout the range. They were the aforementioned Barbiseta, Integriflora, Horridula, Racemosa, Impedita, Quintuplinervis and Punicea (aswell as a hybrid of the two - Cookies).