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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

Main | Family List (MO) | Family List (INBio) | Cutting Edge
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The Cutting Edge

Volume XXII, Number 3, July 2015

News and Notes | Leaps and Bounds | Germane Literature | Season's Pick

ARACEAE. Manual associate Reinaldo Aguilar reports his discovery of Dracontium soconuscum Matuda from the vicinity of Piro, in a relatively dry area near the southern tip of the Península de Osa. This sp., which ranges southward from Mexico, is characteristic of drier habitats, Reinaldo's record being the first from south of Parque Nacional Carara in Costa Rica (though D. soconuscum also occurs in Panama). As far as we know, Carara and the Osa are now the only locales in Costa Rica that can boast two spp. of Dracontium (D. pittieri Engl. being the second in both cases).

BORAGINACEAE (or CORDIACEAE). Unexpected discoveries from the most desolate corner of Costa Rica, part 2. In our last issue (this column), we described the finding of Phyllostylon rhamnoides (J. Poiss.) Taub. (Ulmaceae) in a back-beach thicket near the south shore of Bahía de Salinas, in the driest part of the country. All of a sudden, a dozen years later, the rewards for our efforts in that region are coming out of the woodwork. About 18 months after the Phyllostylon was collected, and during the same series of NGS-funded excursions, we spent half a day collecting on Isla Bolaños, in the middle of Bahía de Salinas [see The Cutting Edge 11(3): 1–2, Jul. 2004]. Said island is itself relatively bleak, and at the time, we perceived nothing to distinguish it floristically from the adjacent mainland. But during his recent visit to INBio (see under "News and Notes"), Manual Boraginaceae contributor Jim Miller happened upon one of Manual co-PI Barry Hammel's collections from that day and proclaimed it to be Cordia truncatifolia Bartlett, a sp. not previously recorded from Costa Rica! The specimen had recently been determined by Barry as Bourreria andrieuxii (DC.) Hemsl. (lately classed in Ehretiaceae), with which it shares a markedly accrescent calyx. Barry well remembers when he collected it, "stumbling about at the summit of the island, tangled among the bird-guanoed thicket." Cordia truncatifolia is otherwise known from Mexico, Guatemala, and Nicaragua, but no closer to Costa Rica than the Department of Managua.

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