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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 5/15/2013)

Flora Data (Last Modified On 5/15/2013)
Genus Schwenckia L.
PlaceOfPublication Gen. P1., ed. 4: 577 [567]. 1764
Note TYPE: S. americana L.
Synonym Chaetochilus Vahl, Enum. P1. 1: 101. 1894. TYPE: C. lateriflorus Vahl. Matthissonia Raddi, Mem. Mat. Fis. Soc. Ital. Soc. Ital. Sci. 18: 1820. TYPE: M. paniculata Raddi. Mathaea Vell., Fl. Flum. 22. 1825. TYPE: M. apostolica Vell.
Description Erect herbs or subshrubs, unarmed, glabrous or pubescent. Leaves simple, entire, alternate or fascicled. Inflorescence terminal, flowers small, solitary or in lax panicles; calyx tubular or campanulate, valvate in bud, 5-dentate or -lobed; corolla narrowly tubular, sometimes saccate, often with a slight enlargement in the upper portion at the level of the anthers, apically with 5 short, deltoid to acicular, sometimes emarginate lobes and sometimes 5 slender appendages alternating with them; stamens 4 or 2 with 0-3 staminodes, the filaments inserted at the middle of the tube, sometimes flattened, sometimes basally pubescent, the anthers included, coherent or connate; ovary on a hypogynous cupular disc, 2-loculed, several- to many-seeded. Fruit a dry, many-seeded, longitudinally de- hiscent capsule, smaller or larger than the calyx; seeds minute, smooth or rugose, sometimes flattened on one side.
Habit herbs or subshrubs
Distribution A genus reportedly including 25 species of Central and South America and the Antilles.
Note One species, the one treated here, is also widespread in Africa. There are no known uses and to judge from the number of specimens in North American herbaria, the plants are seldom collected. The plants are small with small flowers, which may account for the paucity of collections. The reduced stamen number has led to placement of the genus in the Salpiglossidae along with Brunfelsia and Browallia. Schwenckia is named for Martin Wilhelm Schwencke, 1707-1785, a physician and botanist at The Hague. For a discussion of orthography of the generic name see Heine (Kew Bull. 16: 465. 1963).
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