Conostegia polyandra Benth.
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|Conostegia polyandra Benth.|
Conostegia polyandra Benth., Bot. Voy. Sulph. 96, pl. 35. 1844. Type: Colombia. San Pedro, 1841, R. Hinds s.n. (lectotype: K!, isotypes: GH!, LE, fragment BR).
Miconia rupicola Gleason, Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 52: 383. 1925. Type Colombia. EL Valle: exposed cliffs, Buenaventura, 0-10 m elev., 5-10 October 1922, E. Killip 11685 (holotype: NY!; isotypes: GH!, US!).
Small trees 1-13.6 m tall with flattened stems that become terete with age and are sparsely to densely puberulent with sessile stellate hairs; the nodal line present yet slight. Leaves at a node equal to subequal in size. Petiole 0.4-3.5 cm long. Leaf blade 4-14 × 2-7.3 cm, 3-5 nerved, usually elliptic to elliptic ovate, the base rounded to obtuse, the apex acute or short acuminate, the margin serrulate and ciliate, the adaxial sur face glabrous, the abaxial surface sparsely to densely puberulent with sessile stellate hairs and minute white rounded and roughened secretions. Inflorescence a terminal panicle 3-15 cm long, accessory branches absent or less frequently present, the rachis with sessile stellate and stalked stellate hairs, the bracteoles 1-8 mm long, linear to ovate, persistent or deciduous. Pedicel 1-5 mm long. Flowers 5-8-merous, calyptrate, floral buds 6.5-10 × 3.25-6.25 mm, elliptic-pyriform, the base obtuse to rounded, the apex apiculate, slightly constricted below the calyptra, the calyptra and hypanthium not differentiated; the hypanthium 3.5-4 × 5.25-5.75 mm, stellate puberulent. Petals 7-9.5 × 5.25-9 mm, translucent white to white or pink, obtriangular to obovoid, spreading, glabrous, apically slightly bilobed to emarginate. Stamens 26-36, 5-7 mm long, radially arranged around the style, the filaments 3-4 mm, white, without an evident geniculation, anthers 2-3 × 0.4-0.6 mm, yellow, the pore ca. 0.25 mm. Ovary 6-8 locular, inferior, apically glabrous, forming a very low to absent collar around the style base. Style 8-10 mm, basically straight but slightly bending along its length, vertical the distance from the anthers to the stigma ca. 2.5-3.5 mm, horizontal distance absent, stigma capitellate, 0.5-0.75 mm wide. Berry 6-8 × 6-8 mm, dark purple. Seeds 0.45-0.7 mm long, obliquely pyramidal and somewhat angulate, the testa smooth to roughened.
(Fig. 130 View Figure 130 ). On the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua, both coasts of Panama and on the Pacific coast of Colombia and Ecuador and a disjunct population in Peru, sea level to 200(-600) m elevation.
Conostegia polyandra has white secretions on the leaf abaxially. Since this species grows in mangrove habitats, these secretions are probably salt. This is the only species of Neotropical Melastomataceae known to grow in mangroves. It can further be recognized by its 3-4 nerved leaves which tend to have a consistent elliptic shape and serrulate and ciliate margins. Flowers in this species are also noticeable for their great number of stamens and strongly exserted styles. Schnell (1996) and Almeda (2009) commented on the phenological patterns of this species citing its continuous flowering and fruiting throughout the year. In addition these authors stated that the this phenological behavior coupled with few large seeds per fruit might help explain its weedy tendencies. I note here that the specimens I studied did not have particularly few large seeds per fruit. Schnell (1996) suggests Conostegia polyandra is aggressive and somewhat weedy, reminiscent of Conostegia speciosa and Conostegia xalapensis . Its apparent absence in coastal areas in the Caribbean of Costa Rica might be explained by its replacement in these areas by Conostegia xalapensis ( Schnell 1996). Duke and Idrobo 11567 ( MO, NY) reported the berries as "quite edible".
NICARAGUA (fide Schnell). Zelaya: Monkey Point, Stevens 20003 ( MO).
PANAMA. Bocas del Toro: Island of Bocas del Toro, along stream below dam at Bocas, Durkee 71 ( MO, NY); Isla Colón, Wedel 75 ( NY); Isla Colón, Southwest of Bocas at Maccaw Hills, Wedel 531 ( NY); Old Bank Island , vicinity of Chiriquí Lagoon, Wedel 1876 ( MO, NY) . Colón: Miguel de la Borda, Croat 10053 ( MO, NY) .
COLOMBIA. Cauca: Buenaventura, Pacific Coastal Zone, Pittier 1507 ( NY) . Chocó: Municipio de Nuquí, corregimiento Termales, entre Jobe y Arusi, bosque cerca a las cabañas Pijibá, Costa Pacífica colombiana, estribaciones de la serranía del Baudó, Cabo Corrientes, Betancur et al. 6044 ( NY); Strand flora between Camp Curiche and Q. Changame, 3.7 miles S. of Camp Curiche, Duke and Idrobo 11567 ( MO, NY); Costa del Pacífico, Coredó, Fernandez 367 ( NY); area Baudó, about 3 km north of Rio Baudo , on Pacific coast, Fuchs and Zanela 22133 ( MO, NY); Pizarro, von Sneidern 4878, 4888 ( NY) . El Valle: Corregimiento Termales, coastal zone between quebrada Piedra Piedra and Rio Terco, Acevedo-Rodríguez et al. 6905 ( MO, NY); Buenaventura, Alston 8639 ( NY); Costa del Pacífico, rio Yurumangui , Cuatrecasas 15890 ( NY); El Valle, Gentry and Fallen 17234 ( MO, NY); Rio Cajambre , Haught 5352 ( NY); North shore of Buenaventura Bay , Playa Basán, Killip and Cuatrecasas 38690 ( NY) . Nariño: Tumaco, Dryander 2610 ( NY); South end of Gorgona Island, Killip and Garcias 33098 ( NY); Gorgonilla Island , Killip and Garcia 33112 ( NY) .
ECUADOR. Esmeraldas: Limones-Borbón, 5 km before Borbón, Holm-Nielsen et al. 26028 ( MO, NY); San Lorenzo, Játiva and Epling 754 ( NY); Santiago Estuary at Lagartera near La Tolita, Játiva and Epling 1175 ( MO, NY); La Guayacana near Pichangal, Játiva and Epling 2112 ( NY).
PERU (fide Schnell). Without locality, Maclean s.n. ( GH).
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