Croton fragrantulus Croizat (1944a: 466), Croizat, 1944

Caruzo, Maria Beatriz Rossi & Cordeiro, Inês, 2013, Taxonomic revision of Croton section Cleodora (Euphorbiaceae), Phytotaxa 121 (1), pp. 1-41: 24

publication ID 10.11646/phytotaxa.121.1.1

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Croton fragrantulus Croizat (1944a: 466)


12. Croton fragrantulus Croizat (1944a: 466)   . Croton paniculatus Müller Argoviensis (1865: 87)   nom. illeg. ( Fig. 3A–E View FIGURE 3 ). Type:— PERU. prope Chacahuani, s.dat., J.A. Ruiz s.n. (holotype G, isotype P!).

Treelets 5–6 m tall; stellate, multiradiate and appressed-stellate trichomes; branchlets cylindric, young branchlets flattened, conspicuously striate, pubescent, pale multiradiate trichomes. Leaves slightly discolorous, with a pair of sessile saucer-shaped acropetiolar glands; lamina 4.5–11 × 3–8 cm, ovate, apex acute to acuminate, base cuneate to slightly truncate, margin minutely serrate, with glands; upper surface glabrescent, scattered stellate and appressed-stellate trichomes, lower surface pubescent, stellate and appressed-stellate trichomes, rarely multiradiate; venation pinnate, brochidodromous; petiole 1–3 cm long; stipules linear, ca. 1 mm long, deciduous. Inflorescences 5–14 cm long, terminal, lax, apparently branched; inflorescence axis flattened, conspicuously striate, pubescent, multiradiate trichomes; proximal cymules bisexual, with 1 pistillate flower and 1–2 staminate flower, distal cymules with 2–3 staminate flowers; bracts ca. 3 mm long, entire, linear; prophylls ca. 1 mm long, linear. Staminate flowers ca. 6 mm long, subcampanulate, pedicellate; pedicels ca. 2 mm long; calyx ca. 4 mm long, pubescent externally, pale multiradiate trichomes, glabrate internally; calyx lobes 5, united up to half of their length, then free for the terminal ca. 2 mm, entire, equal, slightly imbricate, broadly ovate, apex acute, margin villose; petals ca. 4 mm long, narrow-ovate, apex rounded, villose externally, simple trichomes, glabrate internally, margin villose; disk 5-segmented; stamens ca. 15, filaments subulate, villose, simple trichomes, anthers ellipsoid; receptacle villose with simple trichomes. Pistillate flowers 6–8 mm long, campanulate, pedicellate; pedicels 2–3 mm long; calyx ca. 4 mm long, pubescent externally, pale stellate and multiradiate trichomes, glabrate internally; calyx lobes 5, united up to half of their length, then free for ca. 2 mm, entire, equal, slightly imbricate, narrow-ovate, apex acute to acuminate, margin villose, creased at the base; petals absent; disk entire, deeply 5-lobed; ovary subglobose, pilose, multiradiate trichomes; styles 3, 4-fid, united at the base, each one entire half of their length then branching into 12 terminal arms, covered by multiradiate trichomes, exserted from calyx. Fruits not seen.

Distribution and habitat: —The species has a disjunct distribution between Peru, where it occurs in the Andean valley in Huánaco region, and Bolivia, in the Chiquitana region, in dry forests, at 400–600 m elevation. In Peru, it is only known by its type-collection.

Phenology:— Flowering in October and November.

Taxonomic notes: — Croton fragrantulus   is most similar to C. rottlerifolius   , but the two species can be differentiated mainly by the morphology of branchlets, inflorescence axis and staminate flowers calyx lobes (see table 2).

On the type-collection deposited at the Herbarium of the Museum (P), the annotated collector is Pavon s.n. not Ruiz s.n., as written by Müller Argoviensis on the protologue of Croton paniculatus   . Even though, we believe that collection is a duplicate from the holotype deposited at Geneva Herbarium (G) seen by Müller Argoviensis and used by him to describe that species.

Selected specimens examined: — BOLIVIA. Santa Cruz: Nuflo Chaves, 14 km (by air) NW of San Javier, gap through range and slope on west side, Las Lajas , “El Chupadero”, 16º10’S, 62º36’W, fl., 30 November 1990, M. Nee 40099 (NY, WIS) GoogleMaps   .


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