Comprehensive Description

provided by Smithsonian Contributions to Botany
Aphelandra acanthifolia Hooker

Aphelandra acanthifolia Hooker, Icon. Pl. 2, pl. 113. 1837.

Shrub or small tree to 8 m high; stems spiny, sparingly pilose, the hairs 0.5–1 mm long, yellowish brown, more or less appressed; leaf blades ellipticovate, acuminate at both ends, to 30 cm long and 12 cm wide, the upper surface dark green, hirsute, the hairs about 1 mm long, the lower surface paler green, velvety, densely hirsute with yellowish spreading hairs, the margins coarsely serrate, the teeth tipped by rigid spines 2–5 mm long; petioles rather short, 1–2 cm long, spiny near base, densely pilose, the hairs more or less spreading; interpetiolar bracts small, triangular, the veins ending in 1–5 straight, sharp, yellowish spines to 1.5 cm long; inflorescence a terminal spike and several similar spikes in the axils of the upper leaves, to 15 cm long, 3–4 cm in diameter, loosely imbricate, the peduncle 3–8 cm long, densely pilose, the hairs yellowish, more or less spreading; bracts triangular-ovate, 14–15 mm long, 6–7 mm wide near base, slenderly acuminate, terminating in a small spine about 1.5 mm long, entire, glabrous within, otherwise pilose with yellowish appressed or spreading hairs; bractlets triangular-ovate, 12–13 mm long, 3–4 mm wide near base, abruptly and slenderly acuminate, spine-tipped, rounded, somewhat carinate, sparingly pilose, striate-nerved toward base; calyx segments oblong-ovate, spine-tipped, minutely and rather sparingly puberulent, striate-nerved, the nerves callous below, the margins, especially toward tip, pilose, the posterior 12–13 mm long, 4 mm wide, acuminate, the anterior and lateral pairs 11–12 mm long, 3 mm wide, acute; corolla tube orange-scarlet, the lobes yellow, sericeous without, glabrous within, the tube 32–63 mm long, 4–5 mm wide at base, 7–9 mm wide at mouth, the upper lip 10 mm long, 2-lobed, the lobes 5 mm long, 3 mm wide, the lower tip 10 mm long, 3-lobed, the middle lobe concave, 5 mm long and broad, the lateral lobes about 3 mm long and broad; stamens exserted about 5 mm beyond the upper lip; filaments about 30 mm long, sparingly pilose; anthers about 6 mm long; pollen grains typical, 84μ long, 38μ wide; ovary 5 mm long, glabrous; style about 55 mm long, glabrous; capsule ovate but slightly stipitate, 1.7 cm long, 0.5 cm wide, nitid, glabrous; mature seeds not seen.

TYPE.—Mathews s.n. (holotype K, isotypes FI, P), Peru, Amazonas, Chachapoyas, 1836.

DISTRIBUTION.—Southern Ecuador and northern Peru. ECUADOR. LOJA: Zamora-Huaico (SE Loja), 2300 m alt, 15 Dec 1947, Espinosa 2267 (US); 2250–2300 m alt, 17 Jul 1946, Espinosa 650 (US); Hacienda Montecristi 40 km NE of Loja, course of Río Zamora toward Oriente, 8 Jun 1947, Espinosa 1477 (US); vicinity of Loja, 29 Sep–3 Oct 1918, Rose 23296 (US); vicinity of Loja, 2500 m alt, 28 Jul 1939, Penland 1149 (US); Loja, Apr 1905, 2200 m alt. Rivet 970 (P); near Loja, 8 Nov 1881, Poortmann 131 (P); mountains of Loja, Jul, Hartzveg s.n. (K); Riobamba to Loja, 2500 m alt, 1876, André 4515 (K); without definite locality, Jameson s.n. (US). PERU. CAJAMARCA: Jean: Near Hda Agua Blanca on Jeronga River, 2400 m alt, 30 Jul 1943, Evinger 471 (US); Cutervo: La Achira (Socota-San Andres), 24 May 1965, López & Sagáslegui 5397 (HUT, US); Chota and Cutervo, June 1879, Jelskii 149 (W); Hualgayoc: Hacienda Taulis, vicinity of Casa Hacienda, 2300 m alt, 29 Aug 1964, Hutchison & von Bismarck 6354 (UC, US, USM). AMAZONAS: Chachapoyas: Quebrada Molino 5 km below Chachapoyas, 2200–2400 m alt, 5 June 1962, Wurdack 745 (US); Levanto, 1840, Mathews 3165(K). LA LIBERTAD: Bolivar: Road between Unámen-Bolivar, 3050 m alt, 2 June 1960, López & Sagástegui 3318 (HUT, US). WITHOUT LOCALIT. 1876–1877, Vidal-Sénège s.n. (P); 1872, Grisar s.n. (P).
bibliographic citation
Wasshausen, Dieter C. 1975. "The genus Aphelandra (Acanthaceae)." Smithsonian Contributions to Botany. 1-157. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.0081024X.18