Scientists at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, stated they wished to honor Leonardo DiCaprio for his assistance in rescuing a rainforest from deforestation, which is why a newly discovered tree has been named after him. The tree, officially named Uvariopsis dicaprio, can only be found in the Cameroon forest, which is noted for its extraordinary biodiversity. “We think he was crucial in helping to stop the logging of the Ebo Forest,” said Dr. Martin Cheek of Kew.

When scientists and activists learned of plans to open up vast swathes of the Ebo Forest to logging, they were outraged. It is home to the Banen people and an assortment of rare flora and fauna, including endangered gorillas, chimps, and forest elephants, and is one of Central Africa’s largest largely undisturbed rainforests. International scientists submitted a letter to the government outlining the endangered animal and plant species. DiCaprio took up the cause, and his social media tweets to his millions of fans boosted the campaign’s popularity. Although the forest has yet to be officially proclaimed as a national park, the government later withdrew plans to allow logging. “This could just be a stay of execution,” Dr. Cheek added. The “dicaprio” tree will be the first plant to be officially named by Kew scientists in 2022, following its publication in the peer-reviewed journal PeerJ. Glossy yellow blossoms sprout from the trunk of this little tropical evergreen tree. It is a member of the ylang ylang family and is highly endangered. It can only be found in a limited section of the forest.