Lycianthes sanctaeclarae (Greenm.) D'Arcy

Solanaceae– Tomato Family

Identification:

– hemi-epiphyte

–paired leaves with dense stellate hairs

–blue waxy flowers

– yellow berries

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habit

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Description. Hemi-epiphytic shrub with branches to 2 m long; twigs and leaves densely coated with stalked stellate and branched hairs; leaves paired, petioles to 1 cm, blades to 11 x 26 cm, elliptic, asymmetric, acuminate, base acute and unequal, veins expressed above and below, slightly bullate, minor leaf broadly elliptic, 30-50% as long as major leaf; flowers sessile, arising between leaf pairs, pedicel and calyx stellate pubescent, corolla purple-blue, about 1 cm long; fruit a yellow berry.

Similar species. Lycianthes synanthera has smaller blue flowers and yellow fruit, but lacks hairs, generally occurs at higher elevation.

Local distribution. Atlantic slope from lowlands to 900 m (Río Peñas Blancas valley).

Habitat. Grows on tree trunks in open forest, forest edge, and pastures in wet forest habitats.

Species range. Nicaragua to Panama

Abundance. Uncommon

Herbivores. Callithomia hezia

Phenology. FL: may-jul+; FR: jul+.

Pollinators. Bees

Seed dispersers. Birds

Comments. Occurs as high as 850 m in the Peñas Blancas drainage (Eladio, Poco Sol).

Voucher No. Haber 1883


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Images and text copyright © 2001 by William A. Haber, www.cs.umb.edu/efg
Created: 12 May 2001. Updated: 28 October 2001.