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Flora of the Venezuelan Guayana

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BIGNONIACEAE

21. MELLOA Bureau, Adansonia 8: 379. 1868.

Lianas, the branchlets terete, the nodes with or without interpetiolar glandular fields; pseudostipules ovate to subulate-acuminate. Leaves 2-foliolate, often with a short terminal, trifid tendril with recurved claw-like branches. Inflorescence an open axillary or terminal panicle, sometimes reduced to a few-flowered cyme, the bracts foliaceous, deciduous. Calyx membranous, broadly campanulate, obliquely truncate to subspathaceous with a small ± recurved apicule; corolla yellow, tubular-funnel-shaped, glabrous outside. Anthers glabrous, the thecae straight, divaricate. Ovary flattened-ovoid, ribbed, glabrous; ovules multiseriate in each locule; disk appearing double. Fruit a slightly compressed elliptic-oblong capsule, the valves parallel to the septum, woody, very thick (ca. 8 mm), each splitting in middle at dehiscence. Seeds thin, 2-winged, the wings hyaline-membranous with brown streaks, well demarcated from seed body.

Mexico to Argentina; 1 species.

Melloa quadrivalvis (Jacq.) A.H. Gentry, Brittonia 25: 237. 1973. -Bignonia quadrivalvis Jacq., Fragm. Bot. 37, t. 40, fig. 3. 1800-1809.

Melloa populifolia (A. DC.) Britton, Ann. New York Acad. Sci. 7: 188. 1893. -Bignonia populifolia A. DC., Prodr. 9: 159. 1845.

Liana. Seasonally dry forests, 50-300 m; northern Bolívar. Widespread elsewhere in Venezuela; other distribution as in genus. Fig. 391.

The 4-valved fruit is very distinctive. The flowers of Melloa are very similar to Macfadyena, but differ from Macfadyena uncata by the recurved instead of incurved calyx apicule and from both Macfadyena species by the foliaceous inflorescence bracts.

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Scientific Comments:
Paul Berry (peberry@facstaff.wisc.edu) or Kay Yatskievych (kay.yatskievych@mobot.org).

 
 
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