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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 9/24/2013)

Flora Data (Last Modified On 9/24/2013)
Genus Centrosema (DC.) Benth
PlaceOfPublication Comm. Legum. Gen. 53. 1837
Note TYPE: C. brasiliana (L.) Benth. nomen cons. vs. Steganotropis Lehm.
Contributor W. G. D'Arcy
Synonym Bradburya Raf., Fl. Ludov. 104. 1817. TYPE: B. scandens Raf. = Centrosema virginiana (L.) Kuntze. Nomen rejic. vs. Bradburia Torr. & Gray (1842). Compositae. Cruminium Desvaux, Ann. Sci. Nat. (Paris) ser. 1. 9: 423, Sept. 1826. TYPE: C. giganteum Desv. = Centrosema plumieri (Pers.) Benth. Steganotropis Lehm. I. Sem. Hort. Bot. Hamburg 1826: 18. 1826; Linnaea 3 (Litt.): 11. 1828. TYPE: Steganotropis conjugata J. C. C. Lehmann. Nomen rejic. vs. Centrosema (DC.) Benth. Clitoria sect. III Centrosema DC., Prodr. 2: 234. 1825.
Description Mostly twining vines, trailing, or sometimes high climbing, stems often wiry, puberulent. Leaves imparipinnate 1-5-foliolate, but mostly 3-foliolate, the leaflets narrow or broad; petiolules mostly short, drying wrinkled; petioles sometimes winged; stipels equalling or exceeding the petiolules (Panama); stipules promi- nently nervate. Inflorescences several flowered congested racemes, usually only one flower opening at a time; bracts and bracteoles nervate, the bracts often spathaceous or calyx-like, enfolding the bud. Flowers showy, the standard flat, discoid, often emarginate, with a distinct notch or spur near the base, mostly puberulent outside, the keel and wings directed upwards, curved; stamens dia- delphous, the vexillary stamen free or nearly so, ovary linear, sessile, pubescent, the style incurved, sometimes persistent as an elongate beak, glabrous except basally, apically expanded into a blade, the stigma marginal on the style apex, minutely pubescent. Legume linear, dehiscent along the 2 valves, often spiralling, the sutures prominent, the apex sometimes long-beaked; seeds plump, ellipsoidal, numerous, the hilum linear along one edge.
Habit vines
Note Centrosema is a New World genus of perhaps 35 species ranging from the southern United States into Argentina and throughout the Antilles. The genus is distinct in the notch or spur on the standard and in the flat, linear beaked pods. The striate bracts and stipules, and stipels as long as the petiolules are useful recognition features for the Panamanian species. Centrosema virginiana (L.) Kuntze, widely dispersed in tropical America, has not been collected in Panama. Similar to C. pubescens, it has 5 subequal subulate calyx teeth and the pod is less than 4 mm wide.
Reference Barbosa-Fevereiro, V. P. 1977. Centrosema (A. P. de Candolle) Bentham do Brasil-Leguminosae-Faboideae. Rodriguezia 29: 159-219. Fantz, P. R. 1979. A new species of Centrosema (Leguminosae) from Nicaragua and a key to the species in Central America. Sida 8: 152-156.
Key a. Leaves unifoliolate (simple); petioles conspicuously winged ...... 6. C. sagittata aa. Leaves trifoliolate; petioles unwinged. b. Leaves mostly linear, less than 8 mm wide; pod less than 4 mm wide. c. Leaves with secondary venation at right angles to the midrib; flowers more than 2 cm long; stipules less than 5 mm long ...... 1. C. angustifolia cc. Leaves with secondary venation ascending; flowers less than 1.5 cm long; stip- ules more than 5 mm long ...... 3. C. pascuora bb. Leaves ovate or elliptical, more than 10 mm long; pod more than 4 mm wide. d. Bracts large, persistent 1-3 cm long, 8-15 mm wide; persistent stipules large ...... 7. C. vexillata dd. Bracts smaller, caducous or persistent, less than 1 cm long, narrow, less than 8 mm wide; stipules smaller, 8-11 mm long. e. Bracts caducous; bracteoles calyx and pod drying dark; seeds 6-9 mm across; calyx lobes undulate; flowers pink and red ...... 4. C. plumieri ee. Bracts persistent; bracteoles calyx and pod drying green or brown; seeds less than 6 mm long; calyx lobes pointed; flowers purple, blue or violet. f. Pod more than 7 mm wide, the margins ca. 1 mm wide; stipels 4-5 mm long; leaves glabrate above, mostly 8-13 cm long, narrowly ovate; petiolules 3-5 mm long ...... 2. C. macrocarpa ff. Pod mostly less than 7 mm wide, the margins less than 1 mm wide; stipels 1-2 mm long; leaves pubescent above, mostly 4-8 cm long, broadly ovate, petiolules 1-3 mm long ...... 5. C. pubescens
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