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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 10/1/2013)
 

Flora Data (Last Modified On 10/1/2013)
Genus STYLOSANTHES Swartz
Contributor Michael 0. Dillon
PlaceOfPublication Prodr. Veg. Ind. Occ. 108. 1788.
Note LECTOTYPE: S. procumbens Swartz.
Synonym Astyposanthes Herter, Revista Sudamer. Bot. 7: 209. 1943. Based on Stylosanthes Swartz.
Description Perennial herbs or rarely subshrubs, 0.1-1.5 m tall; stems erect, ascending or sprawling procumbent, diffusely branched, suffruticose, terete, finely striate, un- armed. Leaves alternate, pinnately trifoliolate, the rachis below terminal leaflet 1-4 mm long; leaflets elliptic to lanceolate, 5-30(-40) mm long, 2-15 mm wide, apices obtuse to acute, occasionally mucronate, basally attenuate, the costas prominent; petioles 1.5-9.0 mm long; stipules amplexicaul, bidentate, pubescent, adnate with the petiole base, 3-11 nerved; exstipellate. Inflorescence spicate, terminal or axillary, 1-several flowered, each flower surrounded by a series of bracts and bracteoles, the outermost bracts similar to stipules and giving rise to 1-3 reduced leaflets, similar to cauline leaflets except for size, the bracts enclosing a smaller outer bracteole, usually 3 nerved, ciliate along the margin, within this a densely ciliate axis rudiment sometimes present; within this 1 or 2 inner brac- teoles, deeply cleft, the apices usually long ciliate. Flowers 5-merous, the calyx 4-15 mm long, tubular, 5 lobed, unequal; corolla papilionaceous, yellow or yellow orange and purple striate; stamens 10, monadelphous, the filaments coalescent into a tube, splitting on vexillar side after anthesis; 5 versatile anthers alternating with 5 subbasifixed ones; ovary subsessile, the 2(3) ovules campylotropous, the placentation marginal, the style long, filiform, the stigma minute, terminal. Fruit a loment, biarticulate, distally fertile, proximally abortive or fertile, reticulate or muricate, beaked; seeds ovate or lenticular, compressed, light brown to black, lustrous, strophiolate, Chromosomes: n = 10.
Habit herbs or rarely subshrubs
Note Stylosanthes is composed of approximately 50 species
Distribution ranging throughout tropical and subtropical America, and tropical Africa and Asia.
Note Various species are used as fodder crops, and at least one species, S. guyanensis, has been employed as a cover planting to inhibit soil erosion. Hutchinson and Dalziel (1937) have reported several folk uses for S. erecta Beauv. in Africa including herbal smoke, aphrodisiac, decoction used in baths, and as a charm against injury in battle. No local names or uses have been recorded for the species found in Panama. Stylosanthes hamata (L.) Taub. was reported in error from Panama (Mohlen- brock, 1957), based on Shafer 36 (NY) from Antigua. No representatives of this taxon from Panama have been seen by the present author.
Reference Mohlenbrock, R. H. 1958. A revision of the genus Stylosanthes. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 44: 299-355.
Key a. Inflorescence 5 to 20 flowered; beak of loment minute, 0.1-0.5 mm long, inflexed; leaflets 10-30 mm long ...... 1. S. guyanensis aa. Inflorescence 2 to 5 flowered; beak of loment 1.5-2.5(-4.0) mm long, strongly to weakly hooked; leaflets to 15 mm long. b. Leaflets punctate, hispidulous abaxially; distal articulation of loment ca. 2 mm long, beak ca. 1.5 mm long, strongly coiled ...... 3. S. viscosa bb. Leaflets never punctate, scarcely setose to glabrous; distal articulation greater than 2 mm long, beak 1.5-3.5(-5.5) mm long, uncinate to coiled ...... 2. S. humilis
 
 
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