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Flora of the Venezuelan Guayana

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BIGNONIACEAE

22. MEMORA Miers, Proc. Roy. Hort. Soc. London 3: 185. 1863.

Lianas, shrubs, or treelets, the branchlets terete, without interpetiolar glandular fields; pseudostipules usually small and thick-foliaceous. Leaves in part pinnately or bipinnately compound, sometimes in part 2-foliolate toward apex, sometimes with a simple (rarely trifid) tendril. Inflorescence an axillary raceme, often conspicuously bracteate and bracteolate. Calyx spathaceous to cupular, bilabiate or subtruncate, often with plate-shaped glands; corolla yellow, tubular-funnel-shaped, glabrous outside (puberulous in M. tanaeciicarpa). Anthers glabrous, the thecae straight, divaricate. Ovary linear to oblong, glabrous or lepidote (puberulous in M. tanaeciicarpa); ovules 2-seriate in each locule; disk pulviniform. Fruit linear and strongly flattened to oblong and terete, the valves parallel to the septum, thin or woody, rarely splitting along the midline, the midline not raised. Seeds thin and 2-winged to thick, corky and wingless.

South America east of the Andes; 35 species, 10 in Venezuela, 8 of these in the flora area.

Memora flavida (A. DC.) Bureau & K. Schum. is known from Guyana and Amazonian Colombia and will likely be found in Venezuela. It is quite different from other area species of Memora in the trifid tendril, ebracteate inflorescence, and completely truncate calyx.

Key to the Species of Memora

1. Corolla tube puberulous outside; capsule puberulous, splitting into 4 valves ..... M. tanaeciicarpa

1. Corolla tube glabrous outside; capsule glabrous, 2-valved, the valves not splitting in half ..... 2

2(1). Bracteoles large and foliaceous, ± equaling the calyx; either erect treelets or lianas with the seeds membranous-winged ..... 3

2. Bracteoles subfoliaceous or obsolete, enclosing less than 1/2 the calyx; lianas, often with seed wings thickish or lacking ..... 5

3(2). Shrub or treelet (rarely subscandent); calyx subcoriaceous, bilabiate; fruit subterete ..... M. cladotricha

3. Lianas; calyx membranous, spathaceously split; fruit strongly compressed ..... 4

4(3). Bracts and bracteoles drying light green, conspicuously veined; mature leaflets usually coriaceous; fruit drying greenish yellow to reddish black, > 18 mm wide ..... M. bracteosa

4. Bracts and bracteoles drying black, inconspicuously veined; mature leaflets chartaceous; fruits drying black, less than 17 mm wide ..... M. flaviflora

5(2). Seeds > 6 cm wide, thin with large thin wings; capsule completely flat, drying black with numerous tiny tannish lenticels; inflorescence usually an elongate raceme, the bracts or bracteoles > 4 mm long; strongly seasonal upland forests ..... M. patula

5. Seeds less than 5 cm wide, wingless or thick-winged; capsule ± to not at all flattened, drying black or tan, without conspicuously contrasting lenticels; inflorescence ± contracted or the bracts and bracteoles less than 1 mm long; riverine forests in wet- or moist-forest areas ..... 6

6(5). Seeds thick and wingless; capsule tan, not at all compressed; bracts and bracteoles vestigial, less than 1 mm long; calyx strongly bilabiate ..... M. heterophylla

6. Seeds uniformly flattened, trapezoidal with reduced woody vestigial wings; capsule compressed; bracts or bracteoles > 1 mm long or the calyx subspathaceous ..... 7

7(6). Calyx ± bilabiate; buds not enclosed by the calyx; bracts and bracteoles > 2 mm long; inflorescence several-flowered ..... M. pseudopatula

7. Calyx subspathaceous; buds completely enclosed by the calyx, tapering to pointed apex; bracts and bracteoles ca. 1 mm long; inflorescence reduced, few-flowered ..... M. schomburgkii

Memora bracteosa (A. DC.) Bureau ex K. Schum. in Engl. & Prantl, Pflanzenfam. 4(3b): 226. 1894. -Spathodea? bracteosa A. DC., Prodr. 9: 208. 1845.

Liana. Nonflooded evergreen lowland forests, 100-200 m; Bolívar (Río Cuyuní basin), Amazonas (Caño Yapacana, Isla Ratón, near Puerto Ayacucho). Apure, Barinas, Táchira; Colombia, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Amazonian Brazil.

It is possible that the more western collections, characterized by branchlets with conspicuous raised lenticels and by puberulous petioles, petiolules, and midveins, merit separate taxonomic recognition.

Memora cladotricha Sandwith, Kew Bull. 1953: 482. 1954.

Treelet. Nonflooded evergreen lowland forests, 100-200 m; Bolívar (Río Cuyuní basin), Amazonas (Río Negro). Southern base of Coastal Cordillera, Venezuelan Andes; Amazonian Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Brazil. Fig. 392.

Memora flaviflora (Miq.) Pulle, Enum. Vasc. Pl. Surinam. 427. 1906. -Spathodea flaviflora Miq., Stirp. Surinam. Select. 124. 1850 [1851].

Liana. Moist nonflooded evergreen lowland forests, ca. 100 m; northwestern Bolívar, Amazonas (Río Cataniapo, near Puerto Ayacucho). Apure, Táchira; Colombia (Amazonas), Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Peru, Amazonian Brazil. Fig. 394.

Memora heterophylla (Kraenzl.) Sandwith, Recueil Trav. Bot. Néerl. 34: 214. 1937. -Adenocalymna heterophyllum Kraenzl., Notizbl. K–nigl. Bot. Gart. Berlin 6: 372. 1915.

Liana. Riparian forests, ca. 100 m; Amazonas (Río Casiquiare). Guyana, Brazil (Roraima).

Memora patula Miers, Proc. Roy. Hort. Soc. London 4: 161. 1864.

Liana or scandent-branched shrub. Semideciduous forests, 50-200 m; Delta Amacuro-Bolívar border area. Widespread elsewhere in Venezuela; northern Colombia, with an apparently disjunct population around Tarapoto, Peru. Fig. 393.

Most of the Guayanan collections referred to this species in Flora de Venezuela are now segregated as Memora pseudopatula.

Memora pseudopatula A.H. Gentry, Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 68: 119. 1981.

Liana. Seasonally flooded forests, 50-200 m; northern Bolívar, Amazonas (Río Guayapo, Río Parguaza, near San Fernando de Atabapo). Amazonian Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru.

This species allopatrically replaces Memora schomburgkii in the upper Amazonian area.

Memora schomburgkii (DC.) Miers, Proc. Roy. Hort. Soc. London 3: 185. 1863. -Spathodea schomburgkii A. DC., Prodr. 9: 207. 1845.

Liana. Seasonally flooded riverside forests, 100-500 m; Bolívar (Río Caroní, Río Cuyuní, Río Paragua), Amazonas (widespread). Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, lower and central Amazonian Brazil. Fig. 395.

The calyx of this species is the most spathaceous in the genus.

Memora tanaeciicarpa A.H. Gentry, Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 63: 57. 1976.

Liana. Seasonally flooded riverside forests, 100-500 m; Bolívar (Río Cuyuní basin, Río Icabarú basin), Amazonas (widespread). French Guiana, north-central Amazonian Brazil.

Memora tanaeciicarpa is very different from other Memora species in the pubescent corolla and the 4-valved, tan-puberulous capsule.

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

 
 
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