Lobeliaceae - Hippobroma?

John Nelson nelson at BIOL.SC.EDU
Thu Aug 17 10:29:39 CDT 2000

TH 17 Aug 1016h


        We have been made aware of an unkown, cultivated herb, procured from
eastern Costa Rica, now growing locally, which produces LOTS of seeds. I
take it to be Hippobroma, maybe H. longifolia. It is potentially a pest,
at least in greenhouses, I guess. I would appreciate any ideas you may
have as to its identity-- sorry I don't have a photo right now--a short
description follows:

        STEMS soft, juicy (clear), very short, soft white hairs at least in
upper parts and infl.
        LEAVBES alternate, toothy, fairly abundant very short, soft white hairs
on the surfaces
        FLOWERS in a raceme,each with a lanceolate/linear bract, plus 2 small
bracteoles at base of pedicel
        OVARY inferior
        CALYX 5-lobed, the lobes toothy
        COROLLA white, tubular, NOT SPLIT, almost 7 cm long
        FILAMENTS 5, epipetalous
        ANTHERS 5, very "lobelioid", forming a tube around the style, anther
apices white cilate-fringed
        STYLE 1, as long as corolla tube, not exserted
        STIGMAS bifid/?, lobes very short, ovate
        FRUIT capsule, can't tell exactly how it splits, but looks like a
Lobelia fruit
        SEEDS very numerous, tiny, finely cancellate/beaded on surface


John B. Nelson
A. C. Moore Herbarium
Department of Biological Sciences
University of South Carolina
Columbia SC 29208

ph 803-777-8196
fax 803-777-4002
nelson at sc.edu

Non totum difficile est, sed nihil facile.

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