HabitErect or divergently branched, lignescent perennials 1-3 m tall. Stems stellate-woolly, densely pubescent with a mixture of stipitate to essentially sessile stellate trichomes, the multiseriate stalks of stipitate cauline stellae of variable length, the longest 1-4 mm, the lateral rays 6-9, 0.6-1.5 mm long, the midpoints about equaling rays or somewhat shorter, the hairs often purplish; unarmed or prickly, the prickles, when present, small, 1-3 (-5) mm long, 0.5-1.5 mm broad at base, usually somewhat recurved.
Sympodial StructureSympodial units 2-foliate, geminate.
LeavesLeaves simple, the blades 13-50 x 11-40 cm, about as long as wide, elliptic to ovate, thin-textured, felty-pubescent adaxially with sessile stellae, the dominant form with prolonged midpoints 1-2 mm long and 4-6 short, basally inserted lateral rays 0.1-0.4 mm long, also with a distinct class of smaller stellae often scattered among the larger ones, with rays and midpoints 0.1-0.3 mm long, densely pubescent abaxially with interwoven stalked and sessile stellae, the foliar pubescence in vivo with purplish cast, especially along principal veins; unarmed or sparsely prickly on major veins; major lateral veins 5-6 on each side; base truncate or shallowly cordate; margin coarsely dentate with 5-6 deltoid or depressed-deltoid, acute- or obtuse-tipped lobes at lateral vein terminations, the interlobal sinuses entire or occasionally with 1 or 2 smaller, tooth-like lobes; apex acute; petioles 5-15 cm, typically 1/4-1/2 the length of the blades, densely pubescent with hairs like those of the stem, unarmed or sparsely prickly.
InflorescencesInflorescences up to 1 cm long, leaf-opposed, unbranched, with 1-24 flowers, the distal flowers mostly female-sterile, the axes densely stellate-pubescent, unarmed or minutely prickly; peduncle 0-0.5 cm; rachis ca. 0.5 cm; pedicels 5-15 mm in flower, 5-15 mm in fruit, closely spaced 2-3 mm apart, articulated at the base.
FlowersFlowers with the calyx broadly campanulate, 14-20 mm long, the tube 5-8 mm, 8-13 mm wide, the lobes 7-13 x 5-8 mm, ovate to broadly ovate, commonly somewhat petaloid and white, stellate-woolly abaxially; fruiting calyx somewhat accrescent but not completely covering the fruit. Corolla 3-5 (-7) cm in diameter, 20-25 mm long, stellate, the tube 4-6 mm, thin-textured, white, the lobes 10-15 x 5-7 mm, ovate-lanceolate, spreading, acute at apices, densely stellate-pubescent abaxially, glabrous or sparsely pubescent adaxially. Stamens with filaments 0-1 mm; anthers 7-15 x 2-3.5 mm at base, lanceolate, attenuate, more or less connivent or divergent at tips, yellow, the pores small and directed distally. Ovary densely pubescent; style ca. 10 x 0.5-1mm, cylindrical, straight, glabrous; stigma capitate.
FruitsFruits 1-4 per inflorescence, 3-6.5 cm in diameter, globose, orange when ripe, with green flesh, spreading-hirsute when young with sessile stellate hairs with with elongate midpoints 3.5-4.5 mm long and 5-15 short, basally inserted lateral rays ca. 0.2 mm long, most trichomes finally deciduous.
SeedsSeeds numerous, 2.5-4 x 2.5-4 mm, yellow or light tan, lenticular, broadly ovate, the surfaces minutely pitted.
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