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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 XVII, Number 4, October 2010

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

FABACEAE. A collection by Parque Nacional Santa Rosa resident botanist Roberto Espinoza and associates, from near the entrance of the park, appears to represent Vachellia pennatula (Schltdl. & Cham.) Seigler & Ebinger [or Acacia pennatula (Schltdl. & Cham.) Benth., depending upon what transpires in Melbourne]. This had been another of those spp. that appear to “skip” Costa Rica, in this case ranging from Mexico to Nicaragua, then to the south from Colombia to Peru and Venezuela. Preliminary indications are that the Costa Rican population is natural. Unfortunately, we became aware of this discovery too late for its inclusion in our upcoming Manual Vol. 5 (where Vachellia will enjoy what may prove to be a very brief moment in the sun).

SALVINIACEAE. The plants were first noticed on the surface of a small pond near Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí, on the property of one Ronald Vargas, in March of this year. Today they cover it almost completely. There to bear witness to the possibly historic infestation was former INB curator and OTS employee José González, whose timely collection (#11172) may well comprise the first Mesoamerican record of the paleotropical native Azolla pinnata R. Br. At least, that is the determination José arrived at, after three arduous hours of literature and Internet searching, and having seen his excellent close-up photos, we are inclined to agree. This would be at least the third Old World plant sp. to aggressively colonize the Sarapiquí region in recent years [see The Cutting Edge 14(3): 13, Jul. 2007]. José found recent reports of A. pinnata from North Carolina, suggesting that this sp. may be on the verge of a more widespread New World invasion.

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