Miconia hirtistyla Majure & Judd,

Majure, Lucas C., Becquer, Eldis R. & Judd, Walter S., 2014, Miconia bullotricha and M. hirtistyla, two new species of Miconia sect. Lima (Miconieae, Melastomataceae) from eastern Cuba, PhytoKeys 33, pp. 61-75: 68-73

publication ID


persistent identifier


treatment provided by

PhytoKeys by Pensoft

scientific name

Miconia hirtistyla Majure & Judd

sp. nov.

Miconia hirtistyla Majure & Judd  sp. nov. Figs 2View Figure 2, 3View Figure 3


Species differing from Miconia jashaferi  in having erect inflorescences, clawed petals, apically oriented anther pores and pubescent styles. Species differing from Miconia cubacinerea  in having pubescent styles, clawed petals, and shorter calyx teeth (4.5-4.6 mm in Miconia hirtistyla  vs. 5.7-6.2 mm in Miconia cubacinerea  ).


CUBA. Santiago de Cuba: Southern Oriente and Pico Turquino, high [Sierra] Maestra, July 1922, Fre. León LS-10923 (holotype: NY!; isotype: GH!, HAC!; Fig. 3View Figure 3).


Evergreen shrub (height unknown); stems round in cross section, not ridged, the internodes 0.4-3.3 cm long, stem indumentum of bulla-based hairs to 1.6 mm long, these shaggy, spreading to slightly descending; nodal line absent. Leaves opposite, decussate, ovate to elliptic, not falcate, 1.6-8.2 × 1.4-3.9 cm, slightly to strongly anisophyllous (larger leaves at a node to twice as large as the smaller leaf), dark brown when dried, apex broadly acute, base broadly acute to rounded, margin dentate, dentations obscure, each covered in one large bulla-based hair, venation acrodromous, 7 veined, the midvein and 3 pairs of arching secondary veins, secondary veins mostly basal, the innermost pair, suprabasal, produced 3-9 mm from leaf base, positioned 2.5-11 mm in from margin at widest point of blade, tertiary veins percurrent, ± perpendicular to midvein, 1.5-4.1 mm apart at midleaf, intertertiary veins present, tertiary veins often joined by quaternary veins; adaxial leaf surface with primary, secondary and tertiary veins impressed, quaternary veins obscure, abaxial surface with all veins conspicuously raised; adaxial leaf surface covered in well developed but narrow bulla-based hairs mostly but not entirely covering the leaf areoles, widest hair bases to 0.8 mm, apices of bulla-based hairs mostly erect to recurved, sessile, glandular, hairs produced along the primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary veins between the bulla-based hairs; abaxial leaf surface covered in bulla-based hairs, these mostly erect with undulate apices, those along the primary, secondary, and tertiary veins spreading and larger than hairs produced throughout the lamina, lamina appearing as a series of pits from depressions of the bulla-based hairs produced from the upper leaf surface (i.e., foveolate), sessile, black, glandular hairs produced along all major and minor veins, domatia of tufts of multicellular, linear hairs abundant in axils of primary and secondary veins, as well as the axils of the primary and secondary with tertiary veins; petioles 0.4-1.8 cm long, covered in spreading, bulla-based hairs on both surfaces. Inflorescences terminal, cymose, 2-5 flowered, 1.3-2.4 × 1.2-3.8 cm, the flowers mostly produced in glomerulate clusters, the peduncle 0.6-1.3 cm long, proximal inflorescence branches 0.8-1.1 mm long, pedicels absent; bracts ovate to elliptic, foliaceous, 5-17 mm long; bracteoles foliaceous, elliptic, 2.8-4.3 × 1.7-2.1 mm, covered in bulla-based hairs marginally and abaxially and glabrous abaxially or with filiform hairs towards the base. Flowers perfect, actinomorphic, 6-merous, sessile. Hypanthium 2.6-3.2 mm long, short-oblong to globose, unlobed, slightly constricted below the torus, free portion of the hypanthium 1-1.4 mm long, abaxial surface covered in bulla-based hairs to 2.3 mm long, and occasional, sessile, glandular hairs near the bases of the bulla-based hairs; adaxial surface (i.e., free portion) covered in small, bulla-based hairs; calyx teeth 6, 4.5-4.6 × 0.2-0.4 mm, ascending or spreading, covered in bulla-based hairs; calyx lobes 6, ± triangular, apices acute, 1-1.4 × 1-1.5 mm, covered in bulla-based hairs abaxially and gland-headed, filiform hairs adaxially; calyx tube not tearing, 0.3-0.5 mm long with bulla-based hairs abaxially and sessile, glandular hairs, as well as filiform, gland-headed hairs adaxially and along the apex of the tube; petals 6, most likely white, elliptic to obovate, 5.7-6.6 × 2.7-3.1 mm, with an acuminate apex, only slightly to conspicuously clawed, with one slightly bulla-based hair produced abaxially, subapically, or in some cases, marginally, to 0.1 mm long; stamens 12; filaments 3.8-4.1 mm long, glabrous, anthers 2.2-2.6 mm long, ovate, with one apically oriented pore, anther thecae 2-2.5 mm long, anthers without a dorso-basal appendage; style 3.8-4.4 mm long, pubescent (i.e., with scattered, slightly bulla-based hairs), oblong to only slightly dilated in the middle, collar absent, style subtended by multicellular, linear to elongate-triangular (needle-like) hairs, which grade into the surrounding bulla-based hairs of the ovary apex, stigma punctate; ovary 1.2-2.8 × 1.5-2.5 mm, apex convex, with bulla-based hairs, placentation axile, placenta apparently not deeply intruded, 3-locular; berries not seen, mature seeds not seen.

Distribution and habitat.

Miconia hirtistyla  is only known from the western Sierra Maestra, Cuba ( Fig. 2View Figure 2), where it occurs in montane rainforest, pine forest and elfin forest on rocky soils at elevations of 700-1800 m. Associated melastomes include Miconia argentimuricata  , Miconia norlindii  and Miconia nystroemii  Urb.


Miconia hirtistyla  was collected in bud, at anthesis, and in immature fruit in March and July.


The specific epithet " hirtistyla " refers to the pubescent style of this species ( Fig. 3View Figure 3). Within the Lima  clade, Miconia hirtistyla  is the only species that demonstrates this character.

Conservation status.

Miconia hirtistyla  is mostly known from the very well protected forests of Turquino National Park. Although the species has not been collected since 1978, and we know nothing regarding its reproductive biology or population numbers, it is most likely not threatened by anthropogenic disturbance and habitat loss, at least in the areas immediately surrounding the park. Fieldwork will be necessary to appropriately assess the conservation status of this species.

Specimens examined.

Cuba. Granma: A lo largo del camino de Minas del Frio a Montpie, 23 Apr 1978, J. Bisse et al. HFC-37347 (HAJB); Valle del arroyo Escondido, 700-1000 msm, 26 Apr 1978, J. Bisse et al. HFC-37628 (HAJB); Bartolomé Masó. Estribo del Pico Turquino, 20 Apr 1979, J. Bisse et al. HFC-40517 (HAJB); Manguito, pinares de la loma La Botella, 1200-1400 msm, 22 Mar 1970, H. Lippold HFC-16283 (HAJB). Santiago de Cuba: Oriente, Pico Turquino, 12-26 Jul 1936, J. Acuña SV-10189 (HAC); Oriente, Sierra Maestra, Cima del Pico Turquino, 10 July 1936, J. Acuña SV-22705 (HAC); Oriente, Sierra Maestra, steep rocks of Loma Regino, 25 Jul 1922, E.L. Ekman 14617 (S); southern Oriente and Pico Turquino, high [Sierra] Maestra, Jul 1922, Fre. León LS-10927 (GH, NY).


Miconia hirtistyla  is the only species in the Lima  clade known to possess pubescent styles and it is one of two species that exhibits clawed petals (e.g., Miconia phrynosomaderma  Majure & Judd; Majure and Judd 2013a, a putatively distantly related species). Both characters are likely autapomorphies of Miconia hirtistyla  , because morphology suggests that Miconia phrynosomaderma  is more closely related to Miconia limoides  and relatives (e.g., well-developed bulla-based hairs on leaf adaxial surface, open, expanded, cymose inflorescences, presence of anther dorso-basal appendages; see Majure and Judd 2013). Miconia hirtistyla  is most likely closely related to Miconia jashaferi  ( Fig. 4View Figure 4), with which it had been confused, as well as Miconia cubacinerea  and Miconia tentaculicapitata  . All of these species have condensed inflorescences, leaf-like bracts and bracteoles, broad, oblong to obovate petals, a crown of long, needle-like hairs on the ovary apex and surrounding the style or merely needle-like hairs produced throughout the ovary apex, long, filiform, eglandular or gland-headed hairs along the calyx lobe adaxial surface and apex of calyx tube, long calyx teeth, as well as “shallowly” intruded placenta (versus deeply intruded placenta as in most other species of the Lima  clade). All four species also lack a dorso-basal anther appendage, the presence of which otherwise is a common feature in the clade ( Majure and Judd 2013a). Miconia hirtistyla  differs from all three of these species by the presence of pubescent styles and clawed petals and from Miconia jashaferi  and Miconia cubacinerea  by hypanthium shape (short oblong to globose in Miconia hirtistyla  vs. narrowly oblong to cylindrical in the latter two species). The species also differs from Miconia jashaferi  in inflorescence structure (erect vs. pendant inflorescences; Figs 3View Figure 3, 4View Figure 4), leaf shape (elliptic to ovate with broadly to narrowly acute apices rather than mostly ovate with acuminate apices), anther size (2.2-2.6 mm long in Miconia hirtistyla  vs. 1.8-2 mm long in Miconia jashaferi  ; Figs 3View Figure 3, 4View Figure 4) and shape (ovate with anther thecae continuous with sterile portion of anther vs. elliptic with anther thecae discontinuous with sterile portion of anther; Figs 3View Figure 3, 4View Figure 4), as well as having apically oriented anther pores instead of dorsally oriented pores. Miconia hirtistyla  differs from Miconia cubacinerea  in the pubescence of the abaxial leaf surface, in that Miconia cubacinerea  has a clearly visible epidermis as a result of a sparser indumentum, while the epidermis of Miconia hirtistyla  is mostly concealed by dense bulla-based hairs. Likewise, the primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary veins of Miconia hirtistyla  are densely clothed in spreading bulla-based hairs, however, in Miconia cubacinerea  the veins are easily seen, as the bulla-based hairs are less dense. The abaxial leaf surface of Miconia cubacinerea  also is densely covered in sessile, glandular hairs, while that of Miconia hirtistyla  has sparse, glandular hairs. The lamina of the abaxial leaf surface of Miconia hirtistyla  is conspicuously, deeply pitted (as a result of the bulla-based hairs on the upper leaf surface to 0.5 mm deep), while that of Miconia cubacinerea  is not deeply pitted (i.e., the pits are only superficial to <0.1 mm deep). The two species also differ in calyx teeth length (4.5-4.6 mm in Miconia hirtistyla  vs. 5.7-6.2 mm in Miconia cubacinerea  ), and by the lack of clavate-dendritic hairs on the leaf adaxial surface and calyx teeth in Miconia hirtistyla  .

Lastly, Miconia hirtistyla  differs from Miconia tentaculicapitata  by the less well-developed bulla-based hairs on the leaf adaxial surface, spreading to descending stem hairs, and lack of clavate-dendritic hairs on the leaf adaxial surface, as opposed to the well developed bulla-based hairs covering the leaf adaxial surface areoles, the ascending-appressed stem hairs, and presence of clavate-dendritic hairs on the leaf adaxial surface of Miconia tentaculicapitata  .

Miconia hirtistyla  , and the less phenetically similar, Miconia tentaculicapitata  , are found in the western Sierra Maestra, while those species that are more phenetically similar to Miconia hirtistyla  , i.e., Miconia cubacinera  and Miconia jashaferi  , are found in northeastern Cuba in the Sierra de Baracoa and Sierra de Moa regions; Miconia jashaferi  also is found in the southern part of Sierra de Cristal.

Miconia hirtistyla  is most likely a cladospecies ( Donoghue 1985), as indicated by the putative autapomorphies of pubescent styles and clawed petals. The species also adheres to the morphological/phenetic species ( Judd 2007) and diagnostic species concepts ( Wheeler and Platnick 2000).