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A New Species of Mutisia (Compositae-Mutisieae) from Ecuador

PDF available here

Carmen Ulloa Ulloa and Peter Møller Jørgensen
Missouri Botanical Garden
P. O. Box 299
St. Louis, Missouri, 63166
U.S.A.


Mutisia magnifica
Figure 1. Mutisia magnifica.
Abstract. Mutisia magnifica C. Ulloa & P. M. Jørgensen is described and illustrated. This species is distinguished by its large heads, essentially glabrous phyllaries, ray florets with broadly elliptic, revolute ligulas, long inner lip segments and long style. It is only known from the Cerro Uritusinga in the province of Loja, Ecuador.

Resumen. Se describe e ilustra Mutisia magnifica C. Ulloa & P.M. Jørgensen. Las características más notables son los grandes capítulos, las filarias prácticamente glabras, las lígulas elípticas, anchas y revolutas y, los segmentos del labio interior de las flores radiadas y el estilo largos. Esta especie sólo se conoce del Cerro Uritusinga en la provincia de Loja, Ecuador.

The South American genus Mutisia L. f. comprises some 60 species distributed in two well defined areas: along the Andes from northern Colombia to southern Chile and Patagonia, and in southern Brazil and adjacent regions of Paraguay, Uruguay, and northern Argentina. The genus was revised by Cabrera (1965[1966]) and more recently Harling (1991) treated it for the Flora of Ecuador, Díaz-Piedrahita and Vélez-Nauer (1993) for Colombia, and Ferreyra (1995) for Peru. Harling recognized 11 species in Ecuador and expected one Colombian species to occur in the country. During a recent collecting trip to the province of Loja, Ecuador, we collected a beautiful vine of the genus Mutisia climbing on the vegetation in the upper montane forest, southwest of the town of Loja. The specimens turned out to be a new species belonging to section Mutisia as treated by Cabrera (1965[1966]), and is here described, illustrated, and compared with other species.


Mutisia magnifica C. Ulloa & P. M. Jørgensen, sp. nov. TYPE: ECUADOR. Loja: Cerro Uritusinga, Loja-La Palma Km 18.4, 4°5'24"S, 79°13'39"W, 3,000 m, 28 Nov 1994, P.M. Jørgensen, C. Ulloa, S. León, H. Vargas & P. Lozano 1010 (holotype MO; isotypes, LOJA, QCA, QCNE). Figure 1.

A Mutisia grandiflora Humboldt & Bonpland phyllariis glabriusculis, laciniis labii interioris florum radii longis, ligula ample elliptica, lobis florum disci glabriusculis differt.

Suffruticose vine climbing to ca. 10 m; branches striate, with a caducous ochraceous arachnoid indumentum. Leaves alternate, pinnate, 3–5-paired, rachis densely arachnoid to glabrescent, ending in a long trifid tendril; basal folioles stipuliform, sessile, ovate, mucronate at apex, cordate at base, 0.6–1.5 cm long, 0.4–1.3 cm wide; the others alternate or subopposite, petiolulate, petiolule to 2 mm long, densely arachnoid, folioles elliptic to ovate, acute-obtuse and mucronate at apex, rounded and commonly unequal at base, (1.5–)2.4–5.6 cm long, (0.8–)1.2–2.5 cm wide, finely reticulate, loosely arachnoid particularly on the main nerve to glabrescent above, paler and densely ochraceous arachnoid below. Inflorescence heads solitary, pendulous; peduncle striate, 5.8–13.5 cm long, glabrous or slightly arachnoid. Involucre narrowly cylindric, 8.5–9.6 cm long, 2.2–3 cm wide, phyllaries 25–30, in 6–7 series, entire, glabrous but minutely puberulous at tip, coriaceous, green turning black with age; outer ones broadly ovate, obtuse, mucronate, 0.5–1.5 cm long, 0.4–1.8 cm wide; median ones broadly oblong to oblong-obovate, obtuse to subacute, mucronate, 4.1–5 cm long, 1.8–2.2 cm wide; inner ones narrowly oblong, acute, 8.4–9 cm long, 0.6–1.4 cm wide. Ray florets pistillate, 8-9, ligulate; tube yellow, 7.5–8.8 cm long; ligula broadly elliptic, tridentate, recurved to revolute, bright orange-red, 5–6.4 cm long, 1.8–3 cm wide; interior lip of 2 laciniate segments, yellow, 2.5–4.3 cm long; rudimentary stamens exserted 4–6 mm; style 11.5–16.7 cm long. Disk florets perfect, 35–40, yellow; corolla 9.6–12.5 cm long, glabrous, but with scattered hairs with age; tube conspicuously wrinkled below the middle, not conspicuously bilabiated at apex, lobes ca. 0.5 mm long; anthers exerted 3–4.5 cm; style 12.1–16.5 cm long. Achenes 1.1–1.9 cm long; pappus off-white, plumose, 2.2–2.4 cm long.

Distribution, habitat, and phenology.

Ecuador, Loja Province, Cerro Uritusinga towards hacienda La Palma, in upper montane forest, 3000 m, flowering and fruiting in November. This species was found in a relatively undisturbed forest patch which is severely threatened by the extraction of wood for charcoal production.

Mutisia magnifica is recognized by its large inflorescence heads with narrowly cylindric involucre to 9.6 cm long, coriaceous, mostly glabrous phyllaries, and ray florets with reflexed to revolute, broadly elliptic ligulas, interior lip divided into two long segments, and extremely long style exceeding the ligula. In Harling's (1991) key to the species of Mutisia of Ecuador, M. magnifica would key out close to M. grandiflora Humboldt & Bonpland. Harling treated M. intermedia Hieronymus as a synomym of M. grandiflora. However, Díaz-Piedrahita and Vélez-Nauer (1993), considered M. grandiflora an endemic of Colombia's Cordillera Central and M. intermedia a species distributed from southern Colombia to central Ecuador. Furthermore they suggested that all the Ecuadorian material cited by Harling, might belong to M. intermedia. With only a few specimens in hand we cannot conclude whether these two names should be maintained as separate species, nor which is the correct name for all the Ecuadorian collections seen by Harling. It seems however, that these species, together with M. microcephala Sodiro ex Cabrera, an endemic from Ecuador, constitute a complex that needs further study. This species complex has the branches covered with loosely arachnoid hairs and the lower surface of the leaflets with a dense indumentum very similar to M. magnifica; it differs, however, by the smaller involucre to 7.4 cm long, outer phyllaries with scattered to dense arachnoid indumentum, inner lip of the ray florets absent, lobes of disc corollas pubescent to villous apically, and disc florets fewer in number (25 to 30).

The long and well-developed inner lip of the ray florets in M. magnifica is a feature only found in M. lanata Ruiz & Pavón and M. wurdackii Cabrera within section Mutisia. These two species differ from M. magnifica by the broadly campanulate involucre, the tomentose recurved involucral bracts, and the pappus of the ray florets about as long as the tube. This magnificent new species is only known from the type collection. The other species of the genus known from the province of Loja is M. alata Hieronymus of section Guariruma.

Acknowledgements. We thank the National Geographic Society (Grant No. 5181-94) for the support of our field work in southwestern Ecuador. The Instituto Nacional Forestal (INEFAN) and the Ministerio de Agricultura y GanaderÍa (MAG) are thanked for collecting permits. We thank G. Harling for his careful review. H. van der Werff kindly corrected the Latin diagnosis and commented on the manuscript, and M. O. Dillon, J. L. Luteyn, and J. Prusky provided useful information. We thank D. Neill and R. Valencia in Quito, and H.B. Pedersen in Loja, for all the facilities provided. S. León, P. Lozano, and H. Vargas are thanked for their assistance in the field.

Literature Cited

Cabrera, A. L. 1965 [1966]. Revisión del género Mutisia (Compositae). Opera Lilloana 13: 1–227.

Díaz-Piedrahita, S. and C. Vélez-Nauer. 1993. Revisión de las tribus Barnadesieae y Mutisieae (Asteraceae) para la Flora de Colombia. Monografías del Jardín Botánico José‚ Celestino Mutis 1: 1–160.

Ferreyra, R. 1995. Family Asteraceae. Part VI. In: J. F. Macbride and collaborators, Flora of Peru, Fieldiana, Bot., n.s. 35: 1–101.

Harling, G. 1991. 190(10). Compositae-Mutisieae. In: G. Harling and L. Andersson, eds., Fl. Ecuador 42: 1–105.

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