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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

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The Cutting Edge

Volume IV, Number 4, October 1997

News and Notes | Leaps and Bounds | Germane Literature

¡SANO Y SALVO! Those were the words that jumped from the pages of the Costa Rican daily La Nación on the morning of Wednesday, 27 August. After the whole country had all but given up hope, a forester who had disappeared in the wild country near the Zurquí tunnel on Monday afternoon (25 August) materialized miraculously at dusk on the following day. Some INBio personnel, including Manual co-PI's Barry Hammel and Nelson Zamora, had participated in the search effort, while the rest maintained a prayerful vigil all day Tuesday. None believe that the experienced forester, our own Francisco Morales, could have gotten lost in an area he knew so well; in the back of everyone's mind loomed the seemingly greater likelihood of injury, or even death, due to an accident or foul play. The information that Chico had separated from his field companion, Armando Soto, for the express purpose of seeking an epiphytic bromeliad suggested that he might have fallen from a tree. Indeed, this proved to be the case. Chico had lain unconscious at the base of the tree for most of the night, coming to in the wee hours of Tuesday morning. Clad only in his customary tee-shirt and sandals, and thus unprepared for the frigid (by Tico standards!) cold of the mountain dawn, he still managed to tough it out until sunup. Somehow he found his way out of the forest and staggered-heading away from the search party!-to the hamlet of San Jerónimo de Moravia. From there, Chico was delivered speedily to the INBio compound in Santo Domingo de Heredia, arriving just as the grim prospect of a second night alone in the bush had begun to seem inevitable. The drama captured national attention, as it was covered from the beginning by television news crews and received front-page coverage in all the major newspapers. They say you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone, but in Chico's case we knew all along. Shine on, you crazy diamond!

WELCOME RELIEF. Thanks to INBio for releasing their valuable herbarium assistant Fanny Montero to work for the Manual project in St. Louis during the month of September. During her stay at MO, Fanny dealt principally with our considerable backlog of return-loans from contributors and other specialists. This material had accumulated over the course of the past year due to our ongoing lack of a stateside project coordinator. Fanny managed to enter all the pertinent data in TROPICOS and to fill out chits ensuring that other relevant data will be entered at INB and/or CR. In the process, she also cleared out a lot of physical space for specimens yet to be returned, and circulated a wealth of new material into the MO herbarium. She certainly knocked off a lot of work, and we hope that Fanny had some fun as well.

UNEVENTFUL. That describes Manual co-PI Mike Grayum's recent visit (19 July-27 August) to Costa Rica, which featured nothing more than routine work in the three most important herbaria (CR, INB, USJ). Fortunately, the boredom was punctuated by a week-long side-trip to Honduras in the company of MO colleague Ramblin' Joe Evans. There, we collected in the basin of the Río Cuero, Atlántida Department, partly in pursuit of the elusive Haptanthus hazlettii Goldberg & C. Nelson (family affinity unknown!), which continued to elude.

CONTRIBUTORS IN COSTA RICA. Manual Marantaceae contributor Helen Kennedy (UBC) arrived in Costa Rica on 1 October and is still there (until 28 October). Accompanied mainly by Manual co-PI Barry Hammel, she has visited numerous sites around the country, including the Península de Osa and the San Ramón region, in pursuit of her favorite quarry. With her Manual treatment "in hand," she will spend her last week at the Jardín Botánico Wilson (Las Cruces), where she has planted ca. 80% of the Costa Rican Marantaceae spp., to test and improve her keys. Meanwhile, Manual Ericaceae co-contributor Jim Luteyn (NY) arrived on 10 October from Nariño, Colombia, for his first visit to Costa Rica since 1975. Jim will spend the remainder of the month collecting ericads at some of his old haunts (if he can still find them!).

CONGRATULATIONS to INBio on its seventh anniversary, celebrated on 10 October with a major Tico-style bash. This was attended by notorious party-girl Helen Kennedy, who was also present at the first anniversary festivities, where she was memorably photographed dancing with the legendary Luis Poveda. Afterward, Manual co-PI Barry Hammel led some of the crew to a local dance club for extended revelry. A fine time was had by all, especially long-time Manual Project Coordinator Cecilia Herrera, who had permission from hubby Luis Flores.to stay out late.


COMMELINACEAE. Hammel et al. 20541, collected between Monterrey and La Legua, Cantón de Aserrí, Prov. San José, is the first Costa Rican record of Tripogandra amplexicaulis (Klotzsch ex C. B. Clarke) Woodson. This is a sp. heretofore known only from Mexico to Nicaragua.

COSTACEAE. This bit of in-house trivia, not being a country record, is reserved for the web version of the Edge. Monocot mavens Hammel & Kennedy, almost in unison to "what is THAT?" shouted "DIMEROCOSTUS!" as they carefully drove the Río Bonito stream bed out of the recently declared Piedras Blancas National Park, Río Bonito station. This monster costoid, D. strobilaceus Kuntze, known previously in CR only from the Atlantic slope near Panama, can now be dotted on your maps from the Pacific side of CR, in the Esquinas--Golfito region (Hammel & Kennedy 21145). It is Costa Rica's only native Costaceae with large, nearly pure-white flowers.

MALPIGHIACEAE. A recent day-trip by co-PI Barry Hammel and Manual contributor Helen Kennedy, netted the first Costa Rican collection of Stigmaphyllon bogotense Triana & Planch., growing right along the Carretera Interamericana at ca. 1400 m elevation on the San Isidro slope. This unusual sp., previously known from Colombia to Peru and W Venezuela, might easily be mistaken, on floral characters, for a Banisteriopsis sp. The identification is tentative, suggested by Manual contributor William Anderson (MICH) on the basis of a scanned image and supplementary information; confirmation by wife Chris Anderson (MICH), recent monographer of Stigmaphyllon, is awaited.

PASSIFLORACEAE. A Gerardo Herrera collection (8732) from Las Brisas de Pacuarito, at ca. 300 m elevation near Siquirres, represents Passiflora panamensis Killip, a rare sp. previously known only from Panama and NW Colombia. Thanks to Alfredo Cascante (CR) for following this up and bringing it to our attention, and to MO specialist (and Manual contributor) John MacDougal for his authoritative determination.

THYMELAEACEAE. Several collections by Gerardo Herrera and Abelardo Chacón (2721, 2811, 2857) from 1300­p;1400 m elevation on Fila Matama, on the Atlantic slope of the Cordillera de Talamanca, represent Daphnopsis morii Barringer & Nevling. Two collections by parataxonomist Evelio Alfaro (864, 869) from 1800 m elevation on the Pacific slope of the Talamancas at Estación Santa Elena, Parque Nacional Chirripó, correspond to Daphnopsis folsomii Barringer & Nevling. Both spp. had been regarded as Panamanian endemics. Thanks to Francisco Morales for these late-breaking determinations.


Acevedo-Rodríguez, P. 1997. Novelties in neotropical Sapindaceae I. BioLlania, Ed. Esp. 6: 143-151.

The combination Vouarana anomala (Steyerm.) Acev.-Rodr., based on Toulicia anomala Steyerm., is here validated. Though typified by a collection from the Orinoco basin of Venezuela, V. anomala is also recorded from Colombia and Costa Rica (Acevedo-Rodríguez cites a specimen from the Península de Osa, but we also know this sp. from the Estación Biológica La Selva). The floral differences between Vouarana and the exclusively South American Toulicia are summarized. Includes detailed line-drawing of a staminate flower of V. anomala.
-- & collaborators. 1996. Flora of St. John, U. S. Virgin Islands. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 78: 1-581.
The combination Sphagneticola trilobata (L.) Pruski (Asteraceae) was published in Novon 6: 412 (27 Dec. 1996), as previously reported in these pages [4(1): 7. Jan. 1997]. Turns out it was validated here (p. 114) ten days earlier (17 Dec. 1996). Readers may recall that this is the name currently in vogue for the familiar sp. known for most of this century as Wedelia trilobata (L.) Hitchc.
Ballard, H. E., Jr., M. A. Wetter & N. Zamora. 1997. Two new species of Hybanthus (Violaceae) from Central America and a regional key for the genus. Novon 7: 221-226.
Both of the new spp., Hybanthus denticulatus H. E. Ballard, Wetter & N. Zamora and H. hesperoclivus H. E. Ballard, Wetter & N. Zamora, have been commonly misidentified as H. guanacastensis Standl. Hybanthus denticulatus ranges from N Nicaragua to E Panama; in Costa Rica, it has been collected on both slopes at 0-500 (-1000) m elevation. Hybanthus hesperoclivus is endemic from the Cordillera de Guanacaste south (disjunctly) to the Montes de Aguacate, at 800-1100 m. Lengthy descriptions, full specimen citations, line-drawings, range map, and key to all Central American Hybanthus spp.
Berry, P. E., G. Aymard & G. A. Romero. 1997. Copaifera camibar (Caesalpiniaceae), a useful and locally common, but previously unreported species in Venezuela. BioLlania, Ed. Esp. 6: 275-279.
Costa Rica loses an endemic sp. as Copaifera camibar Poveda, N. Zamora & P. E. Sánchez (Fabaceae: Caesalpinioideae), described recently from the Península de Osa, turns out to be more common in Amazonian Venezuela. There, it is esteemed as "a valuable tree of multiple uses," including furniture manufacture, construction, binding, and even medicine. Fine line-drawing.
Bohs, L. & R. G. Olmstead. 1997. Phylogenetic relationships in Solanum (Solanaceae) based on ndhF sequences. Syst. Bot. 22: 5-17.
Analysis of sequence data from the chloroplast gene ndhF supports previous findings that Cyphomandra and Lycopersicon are nested within Solanum. The indicated nomenclatural changes have already been implemented by Bohs (Taxon 44: 583-587. 1995). A companion paper in the same issue (see under Olmstead & Palmer) provides additional confirmation for these relationships.
Borsch, T. & T. M. Pedersen. 1997. Restoring the generic rank of Hebanthe Martius (Amaranthaceae). Sendtnera 4: 13-31.
Hebanthe, long classed as a section of Pfaffia, is here reinstated as a genus, on the basis of a "character syndrome" that clearly defines it as a distinct evolutionary line within Amaranthaceae subfam. Gomphrenoideae. Seven spp. are tentatively recognized, all lianas, extending throughout the Neotropics (but absent from the West Indies). Several new combinations are validated, including Hebanthe grandiflora (Hook.) Borsch & T. M. Pedersen, for the only sp. occurring in Costa Rica. The latter sp. was treated as Pfaffia grandiflora (Hook.) R. E. Fr. in William Burger's (1983) Flora costaricensis treatment (Fieldiana, Bot. n. s. 13: 142-180). Now, our only true Pfaffia is P. costaricensis (Standl.) Borsch (i.e., Iresine costaricensis Standl. sensu Burger). A synopsis of Hebanthe includes a full generic description, an artificial key to spp., full synonymy, and a list of excluded names. Line-drawings and SEM photos of critical features, plus a detailed, tabular comparison with ostensibly related genera.
Fryxell, P. A. 1997. The American genera of Malvaceae-II. Brittonia 49: 204-269.
This useful contribution, which updates a 1951 paper by Kearney (Amer. Midl. Naturalist 46: 93-131), features an artificial key to all New World genera of Malvaceae. An alphabetical catalog of the genera includes a description of each, together with typology, literature references, infrageneric classification, summaries of distribution and distinguishing features, and information on economic uses, taxonomic history, and related genera. Outstanding genus-level taxonomic problems are highlighted in the introduction. Index to generic names.
Holdridge, L. R., L. J. Poveda & Q. Jiménez M. 1997. Arboles de Costa Rica. Vol. 1. 2a ed. Centro Científico Tropical, San José. 522 pp.
This second edition of the Holdridge & Poveda (1975) classic is essentially a reprint of the original, with updated nomenclature and taxonomy. The photographs and (as far as we can tell) the text are unchanged. The long-awaited second volume is apparently still in the offing (Vol. 1 treats only monocots, and dicots with compound or lobed leaves). The good news is that Vol. 1, long sold only at the Tropical Science Center office, will henceforth be available (in the new edition) at various other locations, including INBio and Chispas Books in downtown San José.
Holmgren, P. K. & N. H. Holmgren (editors). 1997. Additions to Index Herbariorum (Herbaria), Edition 8-sixth series. Taxon 46: 567-591.
At long last, the herbarium of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma in Heredia, chief repository for Luis Poveda's important collections, has an official, if unanticipated, acronym: JVR (the herbarium's full name, heretofore unknown to us, being "Herbario Juvenal Valerio Rodríguez"). Critical information relevant to the facility is provided in standard Index herbariorum format. Now, all four active, major Costa Rican herbaria have official acronyms. Some amended information on the other three-CR, INB, and USJ-is also here provided (p. 582). CATIE, a fifth Costa Rican herbarium with an acronym, is now essentially defunct.
Hunziker, A. T. 1997. Estudios sobre Solanaceae. XLII. Revisión de las especies de Markea. Kurtziana 25: 67-113.
The author conceives of Markea as a largely South American genus of 14 spp., overlooking, ignoring, or perhaps simply predating the recent paper by Knapp et al. (Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 84: 67-89. 1997), in which several of the spp. treated here were referred to Merinthopodium or Schultesianthus (genera accepted, in some form, by Hunziker). Whereas the Markea of Knapp et al. included no Costa Rican spp., Hunziker's Markea accommodates two: M. venosa Standl. & C. V. Morton [Schultesianthus venosus (Standl. & C. V. Morton) S. Knapp] and M. crosbiana D'Arcy [Schultesianthus crosbianus (D'Arcy) S. Knapp]. The latter sp., though described by Hunziker as endemic to western Panama, has been known from easternmost Costa Rica since 1984; furthermore, M. venosa, indicated here as endemic to Costa Rica, has been collected in Panama. Four South American spp. are described as new. Sp. key, distribution maps, exsiccatae citations, fine line-drawings, and index to Latin names. Spanish, with English abstract.
Knapp, S. 1997. Two new species of Diospyros (Ebenaceae) from Mesoamerica. Novon 7: 256-260.
Only one of the two new sp., Diospyros hartmanniana S. Knapp, is recorded from Costa Rica. This sp., distinguished from all other Mesoamerican congeners by its copiously and coarsely black-strigose buds and new leaves, occurs at ca. 800-2200 m elevation on both slopes of the Cordillera de Tilarán (Monteverde region) and the Pacific slope of the Cordillera de Guanacaste (where it barely enters Panama). It is most similar to D. campechiana Lundell of S Mexico and Guatemala. Full description, exsiccatae (mostly in a "Note added in proof"), line-drawing, range map.
-- & T. Helgason. 1997. A revision of Solanum section Pteroidea: Solanaceae. Bull. Nat. Hist. Mus. (London), Bot. Ser. 27: 31-73.
The 10 spp. accepted in this group are restricted to (mainly Andean) South America, with the sole exception of Solanum trizygum Bitter, of Mesoamerica and coastal Venezuela. In Costa Rica, S. trizygum occurs in all the major cordilleras, at elevations of (100-) 700-2000 (-3200) m. Cladistic analysis, key to spp., black-and-white photos of living plants, SEM photos of seed-coats, line drawings, distribution maps, comprehensive specimen citations, and indices to exsiccatae and Latin names.
Lombardi, J. A. 1997. One new species of Cissus L. (Vitaceae) from Middle America. Candollea 52: 105-107.
Cissus osaënsis Lombardi is a trifoliolate-leaved sp. with a dense indumentum, including pilose pedicels and calyces. The new sp., compared with Cissus serrulatifolia L. O. Williams and C. ulmifolia (Baker) Planch., is known to its author by just three collections: two (including the type) from the Península de Osa of Costa Rica, and one from the Atlantic lowlands of Guatemala. Detailed line-drawing.
--. 1997. Types of names in Ampelocissus and Cissus (Vitaceae) referring to taxa in the Caribbean, Central and N. America. Taxon 46: 423-432.
This compendium includes numerous new lectotype, neotype, and epitype designations, as well as three new combinations (none of the latter relevant to Costa Rica). Synonymy is also indicated; some of the synonyms are newly proposed, providing some insight into the author's taxonomic concepts. The publication of a fully realized revisionary work based on Lombardi's research is eagerly awaited.
Luteyn, J. L. 1997. A review of and taxonomic realignments within the neotropical genus Macleania (Ericaceae: Vaccinieae). BioLlania, Ed. Esp. 6: 455-465.
The basically Andean Macleania, with 37 spp. currently recognized, ranks as the fourth largest neotropical genus of Ericaceae. Here, the genus is divided into two subgenera, with M. subgen. Aponema Luteyn newly described and characterized. A list of spp. and their distributions attributes three to Costa Rica: M. insignis M. Martens & Galeotti, of subgen. Macleania, and M. rupestris (Kunth) A. C. Sm. and M. talamancensis Wilbur & Luteyn, of subgen. Aponema. Includes a key to the subgenera and an alphabetical index to synonymy.
Maas, P. J. M. & H. Maas-van de Kamer. 1997. Two new species of Costus (Costaceae) from Costa Rica. Brittonia 49: 274-279.
Both new spp. are assigned to Costus subgen. Costus sect. Ornithophilus, and are endemic to the the humid Pacific lowlands of Costa Rica. The cleverly named Costus ricus Maas & H. Maas, compared with C. montanus Maas, ranges discontinuously from the Monteverde region south to the Península de Osa at 0-1400 m; Costus osae Maas & H. Maas, vegetatively very similar to C. malortieanus H. Wendl., is restricted to the Península de Osa at 0-400 m. Excellent, detailed line-drawings of both new spp.
Morales, J. F. 1997 ['1996']. Three new taxa for the flora of Costa Rica. Phytologia 81: 361-364.
All three novelties in this miscellaneous assortment are known only from the Pacific slope of Costa Rica. Eugenia teresae J. F. Morales (Myrtaceae), compared with E. sarapiquensis P. E. Sánchez of the Atlantic lowlands, occurs at 100-400 m elevation from Carara to the Península de Osa. Hailing from this same region, at ca. 0-700 m, is Parathesis acostensis J. F. Morales (Myrsinaceae), which is compared with the Panamanian P. amplifolia Lundell. Paullinia talamancensis J. F. Morales (Sapindaceae), compared with P. austin-smithii Standl. of northern Costa Rica, occurs at somewhat higher elevations (1200-1850) in the southern Cordillera de Talamanca. No illustrations.
Morley, T. & K. Thomsen. 1997. A new Mouriri (Melastomataceae) from the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica. BioLlania, Ed. Esp. 6: 467-471.
Mouriri tuberculata Morley & K. Thomsen, a tree growing to at least 14 m in height, is reported only from near Rincón de Osa. The new sp. is narrowly related to the South American M. colombiana Morley, M. oligantha Pilg., and M. pauciflora Spruce ex Cogn. Its tuberculate seeds separate M. tuberculata from these and all other reasonably close relatives, with the possible exception of M. pauciflora (the seeds of which are unknown). Several technical, floral details further distinguish the new taxon from the three above-mentioned spp. Line-drawings of important features.
Novelo Retana, A. & C. T. Philbrick. 1997. Podostemum ricciiforme (Podostemaceae) rediscovered and redescribed. Taxon 46: 451-455.
Here is a tantalizing tidbit: during the course of redescribing, on the basis of recent collections, the rare Mexican endemic Podostemum ricciiforme (Liebm.) P. Royen, the authors allude to a Costa Rican collection (Endres 181, W) referred thereto by van Royen (Acta Bot. Neerl. 3: 215-263. 1954). They conclude that "the Endris [sic] specimen is not P. ricciiforme, differing by its larger and more robust stems, longer and thinner leaves with an acute apex, and may represent an undescribed species." Intriguingly, the authors seem tacitly to accept this as a sp. of Podostemum, a genus otherwise unknown from Costa Rica. No mention of either the Endres collection or the genus Podostemum appears in Burger's (1983) Flora costaricensis treatment of Podostemaceae (Fieldiana, Bot. n. s., 13: 1-8). According to van Royen, the Endres collection lacks locality data; however, we have reason to believe that much of Endres's material came from the Atlantic slope of the Cordillera Central. Who will take the bait?
Olmstead, R. G. & J. D. Palmer. 1997. Implications for the phylogeny, classification, and biogeography of Solanum from cpDNA restriction site variation. Syst. Bot. 22: 19-29.
Lends additional support to the conclusions reported by Bohs & Olmstead (see above) in the same issue.
Orozco, C. I. 1997. Sobre la posición sistemática de Brunellia Ruiz & Pavón. Caldasia 19: 145-164.
Cladistic analyses using 20 morphological characters suggest that Cunoniaceae is not monophyletic. It is recommended that Brunellia, recently referred to Cunoniaceae by Hufford & Dickison (Syst. Bot. 17: 181-200. 1992), be segregated in a different family (not necessarily Brunelliaceae) with the Indo-Pacific Spiraeanthemum (including Acsmithia).
Park, K.-R. 1996. Phylogeny of New World subtribe Euphorbiinae (Euphorbiaceae). Korean J. Pl. Taxon. 26: 235-256.
Cladistic analysis of 44 taxa using morphological characters suggests that Chamaesyce, Poinsettia, and Pedilanthus are nested within Euphorbia subgen. Agaloma. The author concludes that continued recognition of generic rank for these three taxa would require similar treatment for nine other segregates of subgen. Agaloma.
Quesada Q., F. J., Q. Jiménez M., N. Zamora V., R. Aguilar F. & J. González R. 1997. Arboles de la Península de Osa. Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad, Santo Domingo de Heredia, Costa Rica. 411 pp.
A detailed field-guide to the 329 tree spp. most likely to be encountered on the Península de Osa, copiously illustrated with line-drawings of varying quality by the first author. A brief introductory section includes descriptions of seven vegetation types occurring in the area, with a map showing the parks and reserves and principal highways and rivers. The species entries are organized alphabetically by family. Each comprises a full page, and features (in addition to a drawing) a brief description, guidelines for recognition, summary of distribution within and outside Costa Rica, and miscellaneous remarks on ecology, phenology and uses. The concluding section of the book contains family descriptions, a bibliography, a diagnostic key to families, a comprehensive, vouchered list (derived from the Manual/INBio database and maintained by coauthor Reinaldo Aguilar) of all plants known (as of October 1996) from the peninsula, and an index. This volume is obviously a "must" for any biologist working in or visiting the Península de Osa.
Turland, N. J. & C. E. Jarvis (editors). 1997. Typification of Linnaean specific and varietal names in the Leguminosae (Fabaceae). Taxon 46: 457-483.
Includes some names attributable to taxa occurring in Costa Rica (e.g., Bauhinia ungulata L.), but these are perfunctory typifications that do not (as far as the "editors" are aware!) affect current usage.
Wagstaff, S. J. & R. G. Olmstead. 1997. Phylogeny of Labiatae and Verbenaceae inferred from rbcL sequences. Syst. Bot. 22: 165-179.
Parsimony analysis of rbcL sequences supports the inclusion of many traditional Verbenaceae (Callicarpa, Clerodendrum, Congea, Gmelina, Tectona, Vitex, etc.) in Lamiaceae, with Verbenaceae s. str. limited to subfam. Verbenoideae (Bouchea, Stachytarpheta, Verbena, etc.). Avicennia appears to be a distinct lineage, suggesting continued recognition of a monogeneric Avicenniaceae; Petrea is also distinct, and here allied tentatively with Bignoniaceae.


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