Conostegia subcrustulata (Beurl.) Triana

Kriebel, Ricardo, 2016, A Monograph of Conostegia (Melastomataceae, Miconieae), PhytoKeys 67, pp. 1-326: 222-226

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Conostegia subcrustulata (Beurl.) Triana


Conostegia subcrustulata (Beurl.) Triana   Fig. 194 View Figure 194

Conostegia subcrustulata   (Beurl.) Triana, Trans. Linn. Soc. 28: 98. 1071. Miconia subcrustulata   Beurl., Prim. Fl. Portob. 130. 1856. Type: Panama. Porto Bello in montibus, April 1826, Billberg s.n. (lectotype: S!, designated here).

Conostegia purpurea   Grisebach, Bonplandia 6: 6. 1858. Type: Panama. in ripas fluminis, Chagres, E. Duchassaing s.n. (holotype: GOET!).


Shrub to small tree 1-5 m tall with tetragonal stems at first but soon becoming terete that are tomentulose, covered with small stellate hairs and sometimes also more developed somewhat branched or roughened trichomes; the nodal line present but slight and obscured by indument. Leaves of a pair equal to somewhat unequal in length. Petioles 0.5-12 cm. Leaf blades 5-20.7 × 3.1-12 cm, 5-9 plinerved, with the innermost pair of primary veins diverging from the mid vein 0.5-3 cm above the base in mostly opposite to sub opposite fashion, ovate, the base rounded to cordate, the apex acute or short acuminate, the margin serrate and short ciliate, the adaxial surface sparsely hirsute to glabrous,the abaxial surface tomentulose covered with small stellate hairs and sometimes with also more developed somewhat branched or roughened trichomes intermixed. Inflorescence a terminal panicle 6.7-30 cm long branching above the base, accessory branches present, the rachis covered with stellate hairs, bracteoles to 1.5 mm, linear, deciduous. The pedicels 0.7-2 mm. Flowers 5(-6) merous, calyptrate. Floral buds 3-6 × 2-3.5 mm, pyriform, the base rounded, the apex acute to apiculate and with teeth at the tip, constricted at the middle, hypanthial and calyptrate portions well differentiated, the hypanthium 2-3.5 × 2-3 mm, glabrescent, with stellate trichomes. Petals 4-5 × 2.5-3.25 mm, pink, narrowly obovate, spreading, glabrous, apically acute. Stamens 10 (-12), 4-5 mm, somewhat zygomorphic, the filament 2-2.75 mm, white, geniculate near the apex, anthers 1.8-2.5 × 0.5-1 mm, linear to elliptic, yellow, laterally compressed, the pore 0.2-0.3 mm wide, ventrally inclined. Ovary (4-)5(-6) locular, inferior, apically glabrous and not forming an evident collar around the style. The style 4-4.5 mm, straight but abruptly bent just below the stigma, vertical distance of the anther pore to the stigma -1 - -0.25 mm, stigma clavate to capitellate, 0.65-1 mm wide. Berry 4-6 × 4-6 mm, at first pink but turning dark purple to black. Seeds 1-1.5 mm long, narrowly wedge shaped, glossy on one side and smooth on the other.


Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, and a locality in central Ecuador, mostly at low elevations but occasionally to 1500 m in elevation. Fig. 195 View Figure 195 .

Conostegia subcrustulata   is a weedy species frequently found in open areas and on roadsides. It is easy to recognize because of its membranaceous, broad leaves with serrate and ciliate margins, and whitish stellate trichomes on twigs and inflorescences. The latter are generally pink, as are the hypanthia and calyptras. The calyptra in this species tends to have small appendage or calyx teeth at the apex. The calyptra is quite thick but lacks sclereids. The filaments are evidently geniculate which agrees with its phylogenetic placement in the Geniculatae   clade. In the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica, flowers of this species were found to be quite variable. In particular, the positioning of the stamens with respect to the style varies almost flower to flower. The short style slightly bent apically might contribute to this apparent intrafloral interference.

Schnell reports on observation by Dent-Acosta who at La Selva observed a species of Melipona   as the most common visitor of Conostegia subcrustulata   flowers between 8:30 and 10:30 am. Dent-Acosta also reported on pollination of all flowers but fruit set of a couple of berries a day per inflorescence. Lastly, Dent-Acosta noted that ovaries have about 200 ovules and stigmas received more than 200 grains but only up to seventy seeds were pro duced in each one. Schnell (1996) suggests this is either a case of a self-incompatibility mechanism or self limitation of seed and fruit development. He further suggests it might be an example of fruit and or seed abortion. I have also observed Melipona costaricensis   as a common visitor of Conostegia subcrustulata   at Los Charcos, Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica.

Hybrids with Conostegia xalapensis   were reported by Schnell (1996) from El Valle, Coclé, Panama. Schnell tested the viability of these potential hybrids and found very low viability suggesting they were indeed hybrids. I have collected a specimen which appears to be a hybrid with Conostegia xalapensis   in Sarapiquí, Costa Rica. The specimen looks like Conostegia subcrustulata   but has an abaxial leaf surface more like Conostegia xalapensis   in its heavy indument. Schnell also reports possible hybridization with Conostegia speciosa   from two Costa Rican specimens, but the testing of pollen viability resulted in normally filled grains.

Schnell (1996) reported the findings of Ellison et al. (1993) and colleagues who studied the germination of seedling ecology. They reported that the seeds handled dry storage and had about a 50% germination rate.

Specimens examined.

HONDURAS (fide Schnell). Olancho: between Poncaya and Río del Incendio, Blackmore and Heath 2078.

NICARAGUA. Estelí: common on moist Estelí river bank 5 kms from Estelí town, Molina 23012 ( MO, NY)   . Granada: Catarina, Baker 2223 ( MO, NY). Matagalpa: Cut-over hills about 15 km. northeast of Matagalpa along Rio Las Canas , Williams et al. 27545 ( MO, NY)   .

COSTA RICA. Alajuela: La Palma de San Ramón, Brenes 5752 ( CR, NY); San Pedro de San Ramón, Brenes 5083, 22291 ( NY); en la orilla oriental del Rio San Carlos , en jabillos, Jiménez 1795 ( CR, NY); Ciudad Quesada, Quebrada El Palo y Las Nubes, Morales 134500 ( INB, NY). Villa Quesada San Carlos, Smith 3 ( NY); 3.5 km west of Fortuna , 2.5 km northwest of New Volcan Arenal along its sloping base, Taylor and Taylor 11696 ( NY). Cartago: roadside near Pavones, Lent 21 ( CR, NY)   . Guanacaste: along Guacimal-Monteverde road ca. 16 km from Santa Elena, Penneys and Blanco 1794 ( FLAS, NY). Heredia: Finca La Selva, the OTS Field Station on the Rio Puerto Viejo just east of its junction with the Rio Sarapiqui , Sendero El Atajo cerca del Guayabal, Chacón 565 ( NY). Finca San Bosco al otro lado del Rio Sarapiqui al ES de Puerto Viejo, Jiménez 4149 ( MO, NY); Finca La Selva , the OTS Field Station on the Rio Puerto Viejo just E of its junction with the Rio Sarapiqui , McDowell 131 (F, MO, NY); Sarapiquí. CECAFOR, Santamaria et al. 5650 ( INB, NY)   . Limón: slopes above Río Pacuare, between Jicotea and the Río Pacuare along the road from Turrialba to Moravia, Burger and Ramirez 1966 ( CR, NY); Shiroles, Talamanca, Tonduz 9345 ( NY); above the Rio Pacuare about 15 kms west of Moravia , Williams 19497 ( NY)   . Puntarenas: Golfito, R.F. Golfo Dulce, Península de Osa, junto al Río Rincón, camino a la estación Los Patos, Acosta et al. 1188 ( INB, NY); about 4-5 km N of Miramar on CR 144, Almeda et al. 2866 ( CR, NY); Cultivated on the property of Mr. Robert Wilson about 5-6 km south of San Vito , in garden originally from Villa Neilly at 50 m alt, Burger 4596 ( NY); Pérez Zeledón, Tinamaste, Finca de los suizos, Estrada 1523 ( CR, NY); Canton de Osa , Camino a Rancho Quemado, del cruce 1 km, Hurtado 115 ( CR, INB, MO, NY)   . San José: Camino entre Puriscal y P. N. La Cangreja, Kriebel 5333 ( INB, NY); Turrubares, Montelimar, 1 km E de la Escuela, Murillo et al. 85 ( INB, NY). Perez Zeledón, Vicinity of El General, Skutch 2503, 5156 ( MO, NY); lower slopes of Cordillera de Talamanca along Rio Hermoso , Finca El Quizarrá, Williams 28422 ( NY)   .

PANAMA. Bocas del Toro: Region of Almirante, Cooper 341 ( NY); 10-15 miles inland (S) from mouth of Changuinola River, Lewis et al. 973 ( NY); Near Lago de Fortuna , ca. km 80 from Chiriquí on road to Chiriquí Grande, Penneys 1727 ( FLAS, NY); Vecinity of Nievecita , Woodson, Allen and Seibert 1874 ( MO, NY). Canal Zone: Road C-16 northwest of Pedro Miguel , Croat 12254 ( MO, NY)   ; Chiriquí: Cerro Galera Chorcha, Vcty. Gualaca, Allen 5064 ( NY); Río Chiriquí to Remedios, Woodson et al. 1183 ( MO, NY). Coclé: Vicinity of El Valle, Allen 1152 ( NY); Vicinity of San Felix, Allen 3653 ( NY); 6.5 km from La Pintada on road to Toabré, Penneys and Blanco 1674 ( FLAS, NY); El Valle de Anton and vicinity, Seibert 484 ( NY); between Las Margaritas and El Valle, Woodson, Allen and Seibert 1740 ( MO, NY)   . Darién: Headwaters of Rio Chico, Allen 4602 ( NY); Puerto St. Dorotea, Dwyer 2240 ( MO, NY). Veraguas: Hills west of Soná, Allen 1031 ( MO, NY)   .

COLOMBIA. Antioquia: en los alrededores de Villa Arteaga, Araque and Barklay 723 ( NY); entre los ríos Guapá y León, Ruiz Landa, Rivera and Barklay 379 ( NY); Carretera Mutatá-Pavarando, antes del puente sobre el Río Sucio, Fonnegra et al. 1670 ( MO, NY); Guapá. 53 km south of Turbo, Haught 4596 ( NY); 3 km WSW of Mutatá along road to Pavarandogrande, Zarucchi et al. 5046 ( MO, NY).

ECUADOR. Los Rios: Hacienda Clementina, Harling 71, 161 ( MO, NY).














Conostegia subcrustulata (Beurl.) Triana

Kriebel, Ricardo 2016

Conostegia purpurea

Griseb 1858