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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

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The Cutting Edge

Volume XI, Number 4, October 2004

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

BORAGINACEAE. Cordia globosa (Jacq.) Kunth, comprising shrubby plants with white flowers, can now be reported formally from Costa Rica for the first time, based on several determinations made in 2000 by specialist James S. Miller (MO). The Costa Rican material, hailing from several sites in the Guanacaste region and the Península de Nicoya, had been confused with the much more common Cordia guanacastensis Standl.

EUPHORBIACEAE. Resident botanist (and Euphorbiaceae specialist) José González communicates the following new records for the Estación Biológica La Selva: Phyllanthus stipulatus (Raf.) G. L. Webster, which had been found as close as the Llanura de Santa Clara; and Tragia bailloniana Müll. Arg., previously known from both lower down (Llanura de Tortuguero) and higher up the mountain (Virgen del Socorro). Tragia also constitutes a new generic record for the site.

MALVACEAE. The recent flurry of activity in Malvaceae continues with Manual Malvaceae contributor Paul Fryxell’s recent redetermination of a Francisco Morales collection as Hochreutinera amplexifolia (DC.) Fryxell, otherwise recorded from central Mexico to Honduras (and maybe Panama). Chico’s #5034 was gathered in the Valle Central, where it grew in a ruderal situation at 850–900 m elevation near Puente de Mulas, spanning the Río Virilla near San Antonio de Belén. We had misidentified this collection as Abutilon divaricatum Turcz., from which H. amplexifolia differs at the generic level by a decidedly difficult-to-see constriction of the mericarps below the bottom seed, but more practically (at the sp. level) by its amplexicaul upper leaves, broader calyx lobes, and wonderfully pustulate (vs. smooth) seeds. A second country record hails from that mother lode of new Malvaceae records, Parque Nacional Palo Verde, where it was registered (as usual) by park administrator (and last surviving plant parataxonomist) Ulises Chavarría. His #2237 represents Sida abutifolia Mill. (previously known from Mexico, Guatemala, Ecuador, Peru, and the West Indies), according to the determination made originally via a scanned image sent to Fryxell and later reaffirmed by Manual co-PI Barry Hammel on his recent visit to MO. And finally, a correction: turns out we jumped to a conclusion regarding U. Chavarría 2107, which we had identified as Hibiscus trilobus Aubl. (see this column in our last issue). According to Hibiscus expert O. J. Blanchard, Jr. (with whom Fryxell put us in contact), Ulises’s collection instead corresponds to H. striatus Cav.—still a new record for Costa Rica, otherwise known from Texas, Mexico, Honduras, Bolivia, Paraguay, and the West Indies.

ONAGRACEAE. Ludwigia affinis (DC.) H. Hara, a widespread, ± weedy herb well known throughout the Atlantic coastal plain of Costa Rica, had somehow never been detected at the Estación Biológica La Selva. The sharp eyes of new La Selva resident (and Manual Onagraceae contributor) José González have now filled that lacuna.


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