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Published In: Anales de la Academia de Ciencias Medicas . . . 6: 146. 1869. (15 Nov 1869) (Anales Acad. Ci. Med. Habana) Name publication detail

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 7/28/2016)
Acceptance : Accepted
Note : Belongs to Tribe Palicoureeae
Project Data     (Last Modified On 7/28/2016)

Margaritopsis C. Wright has been treated as a pantropical genus of shrubs, small trees, and subshrubs found in seasonal to wet vegetation. Its species were preeviously included in the broadly circumsribed, polyphyletic genus Psychotria s.l., but molecular analyses showed that Margaritopsis and several other genera are distinct (Andersson, 2001, 2002). Margaritopsis has been circumscribed to include 27 neotropical found from southern Mexico and the Antilles to Bolivia and Paraguay, along with at least 50 paleotropical species found in Africa, Asia, and the Pacific islands (Barrabé et al., 2012; Razafimandimbison et al., 2014). The Paleotropical species have variously been classified in Chazaliella E.M.A. Petit & Verdc. in Africa, and Psychotria, Reacea, and other genera in southeastern Asia and the Pacific. The majority of species appear to be found in Asia and the Pacific, although the African species have not been studied in detail and probably a number of undescribed species remain to be discovered there. A few unusual species from the Greater Antilles were originally included in Margaritopsis, while the rest of the Neotropical species were included by some or all authors in Psychotria. This web page details the Neotropical species.

However recently an older name was demonstrated to apply to this genus, Eumachia DC. That genus previously included only one species from the southern Pacific, but Barrabé et al. (2012) and Razafimandimbison et al. (2014) showed in molecular analyses that Eumachia falls within the circumscription of Margaritopsis and is the oldest name for hte group. They proposed conservation of the genus name Margaritopsis but that proposal was not supported. Subsequently new combinations were published for selected Neotropical species by Delprete & Kirkbride (2015), but most of the remaining species of the genus still need nomenclatural transfer. Until names in Eumachia are available for all the species of this genus (Taylor, Razafimandimbison, Barrabé, Jardim, & Barbosa, submitted), the species are here treated together in Margaritopsis. This is done to provide a comprehensive overview of this mnonophyletic lineage, and the updated names in Eumachia for individual species are noted on their corresponding web pages.

Margaritopsis has opposite leaves; raphides in its tissues; stems that are usually flattened and longitudinally ridged on each side; persistent stipules that are interpetiolar or united around the stem and truncate or with 1 or 2 linear lobes that are sometimes glandular; subcapitate to usually laxly cymose terminal inflorescences, with or without bracts; sessile or pedicellate, small, usually distylous flowers; white corollas with five valvate lobes; bilocular ovaries with the basal ovules solitary in each locule; rather small, red or orange, drupaceous fruits; and 2 unilocular pyrenes that are smooth or ridged on the adaxial surface and smooth or with a longitudinal ridge ventrally (Taylor, 2005). The morphology of these plants has also been described and illustrated in detail by Verdcourt (1975, 1977).

The key to species and list of names of neotropical Margaritopsis below is based on the review by Taylor (2005). Andersson (2001) published the new combinations M. membranacea (Gillespie) L. Andersson and M. abrupta (Hiern) L. Andersson for the types of Readea and Chazaliella, respectively, but the paleotropical species of this genus in its newly expanded circumscription have not been reviewed together and new combinations in Margaritopsis remain to be published for most of them.

Author: C.M. Taylor
The content of this web page was last revised on 16 November 2015.
Taylor web page: http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/Research/curators/taylor.shtml



In the Neotropics, Margaritopsis is found in lowland wet, seasonal, dry, and gallery forests from southern Mexico and the Antilles to Bolivia and Paraguay.



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 Margaritopsis C.Wright, in Sauvalle, Anales Acad. Ci. Méd. Habana 6: 146 (1869). -- Type: Margaritopsis acuifolia C.Wright.

Chytropsia Bremek., Recueil Trav. Bot. Néerl. 31: 291 (1934). -- Psychotria Sect. Chytropsia (Bremek.) Steyerm., Mem. New York Bot Gard. 23: 484 (1972). -- Type: Chytropsia astrellantha (Wernham) Bremek., = Margaritopsis astrellantha (Wernham) L.Andersson.
            Shrubs, subshrubs, or infrequently small trees, sometimes deciduous, occasionally weak and clambering, often glabrous; internodes often flattened, usually with a slender longitudinal ridge on each side. Leaves opposite [or 3--4 per node], distichous; blades often with pubescent or crypt-type (i.e., foveolate) domatia in abaxial axils of secondary veins; stipules interpetiolar or united around stem, generally persistent with leaves though usually becoming indurated and their upper portions falling through fragmentation, adaxially glabrous or sometimes sericeous, sheath smooth to 1--2-costate, entire, dentate, or with 1--2 lobes or aristae, these entire or sometimes bearing in turn 1--2 small caducous glandular appendages, with sheath often enclosing well developed colleters, these often also persistent and becoming indurated. Inflorescences terminal, sometimes becoming displaced to pseudoaxillary (i.e., lateral) after anthesis, sessile to pedunculate, capitate to paniculate with axes 2--several per node, bracteate or not. Flowers bisexual, usually distylous, sessile or pedicellate; calyx limb reduced to well developed, entire to 5-lobed, without calycophylls; corolla tubular to funnelform, white to yellow, internally glabrous or pubescent in various patterns, tube straight, lobes 5, valvate in bud, smooth or abaxially thickened; stamens 5, inserted in corolla tube, anthers ellipsoid to oblong, dehiscent by longitudinal slits; ovary inferior, 2-locular, ovules 1 per locule, basal; stigmas 2, linear. Fruit drupaceous, subglobose to ellipsoid, fleshy, red to orange; pyrenes 2, hemispherical (i.e., planoconvex), 1-locular, dehiscent by 2 marginal slits extending to its middle and sometimes also with several shorter dorsal slits, dorsally (i.e., abaxially) smooth or with 1--5 low ridges, ventrally (i.e., adaxially) plane and smooth or with a low central longitudinal ridge.
            Pantropical, with at least 50 species; at least 27 neotropical species in wet to seasonal and dry forests, southern Mexico and the Antilles to Bolivia and Paraguay.



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Key to Neotropical Species of Margaritopsis

1. Leaves ovate to lanceolate, subsessile, mucronate or with a spine at the apex; flowers 1 to 3; Cuba, Hispaniola.

   2. Peduncles to 6 mm long.... M. lanceifolia

   2. Peduncles 1-2 mm long.

      3. Flowers solitary; corollas 1-2 mm long; Cuba... M. acuifolia

      3. Flowers 3; corollas ca. 3.5 mm long; Hispaniola....M. triflora

1. Leaves elliptic to lanceolate, oblanceolate, elliptic-oblong, narrowly elliptic, lanceolate, or obovate, petiolate to subsessile, at apex entire; flowers 1--numerous; throughout the Neotropics.

   4. Inflorescences capitate to subcapitate.

      5. Calyx limbs 2-5 mm long, truncate to shallowly lobed with lobes obtuse to rounded.

         6. Stipules united in a subtruncate to truncate sheath; fruits ca. 5 mm long...M. deinocalyx

         6. Stipules triangular to ligulate on each interpetiolar side; fruits 10-25 mm long.

             7. Fruits 17-25 mm long.... M. paupertina

             7. Fruits 10-12 mm long.... M. podocephala

      5. Calyx limbs 0.2-3.5 mm long or shorter, truncate or denticulate to deeply lobed, if 2 mm long or longer then lobed for 1/3 or more with the lobes acute.

          8. Inflorescences sessile, involucrate with the external bracts small but clearly larger than the other bracts and enclosing them and the flowers.

              9. Involucral bracts several, obtuse to truncate; leaves 5-14 x 1.5-5 cm; Central America to northern South America...M. kappleri

              9. Involucral bracts 2, acute; leaves 1-5.5 x 0.5-3 cm; southeastern Brazil...M. schuechiana

          8. Inflorescences sessile to pedunculate, ebracteate or bracteate but bracts not involucral, if external bracts surround part of inflorescence then these similar to the other bracts.

              10. Stipules truncate, denticulate, or bilobed but with lobes less than 1 mm long and persistent.

                     11. Inflorescences with well developed peduncles 5-25 mm long....M. chaenotricha

                     11. Inflorescences sessile or subsessile with peduncles to 3 mm long.

                          12. Flowers 1-2; leaves 0.8-2 mm wide....M. carrascoana

                          12. Flowers 5 to numerous; leaves 10-70 mm wide.

                                13. Corolla tubes 3 mm long, corolla lobes with terminal appendages ca. 0.2 mm long; widespread in Amazon basin to eastern Brazil and Paraguay....M. cephalantha

                                13. Corolla tubes 2-2.5 mm long, corolla lobes with terminal appendages 0.3--0.5 mm long; Amazon basin and Guayana Highlands....M. pallidinervia

             10. Stipules with 1 to several lobes 1-3 mm long, persistent or sometimes caducous.

                  14. Calyx lobes 1-3.5 mm long, usually spreading to reflexed; Central America to northwestern Ecuador....M. haematocarpa

                  14. Calyx lobes 1 mm long or less, usually ascending; South America.

                       15. Inflorescences capitate, in shape subglobose; Guianas...M. guianensis

                       15. Inflorescences capitate to subcapitate, in shape regularly to irregularly subglobose to patelliforme; Central America through southern South America.

                             16. Calyx limb lobed for 1/3-1/2 of its length; inflorescences capitate; Surinam and northeastern Brazil.... M. wilhelmensis

                             16. Calyx limb lobed shallowly or for up to 1/4 of its length; inflorescences subcapitate to congested cymose.

                                   17. Leaves oblanceolate; peduncles 1-5 mm long; western Amazon basin....M. nana

                                   17. Leaves elliptic to elliptic-oblong; peduncles 5-15 mm long; Amazon basin to eastern Brazil and Paraguay.

                                         18. Corolla tube 1-1.5 mm long; leaves 4-11 x 1-5 cm; Amazon basin to eastern Brazil and Paraguay...M. chaenotricha

                                         18. Corolla tube 4-5 mm long; leaves 1.5-7.5 x 0.5-2.5 cm; Paraguay...M. hassleriana

   4. Inflorescences branched with secondary axes developed.

       19. Stipule lobes 0.5-3.5 mm long, persistent or caducous, if less than 1 mm long then caducous.

            20. Calyx limbs 0.5-0.6 mm long....M. albert-smithii

            20. Calyx limbs 1-4 mm long (including lobes).

                 21. Leaves oblanceolate, shortly rounded to obtuse at base....M. huallagae

                 21. Leaves elliptic to elliptic-oblong, acute to cuneate at base.

                       22. Calyx limb lobed for 1/3-1/2 of its length, lobes narrowly triangular to linear, acute; fruits 5-6 x 5-6 mm....M. haematocarpa

                       22. Calyx limb lobed shallowly, for 1/4 of its length or less, lobes triangular, obtuse to rounded; fruits 17-25 x 15-17 mm....M. paupertina

      19. Stipule lobes less than 1.5 mm long and persistent.

            23. Leaves abaxially with pilosulous patches in the axils of the secondary veins; plants of dry and seasonal forests.

                 24. Leaves narrowly elliptic to oblanceolate with the secondary veins prominent abaxially; calyx limbs 1-1.5 mm long; Cuba and Hispaniola....M. agustinae

                 24. Leaves oblanceolate to obovate or elliptic-oblong with the secondary veins plane to prominulous abaxially; calyx limbs 1.2-2 mm long; throughout the Antilles and in Mexico, Central America and northern South America.

                       25. Inflorescences 5- to several flowered; throughout the Antilles and in Mexico, Central America and northern South America....M. microdon

                       25. Inflorescences 2-3-flowered; Cuba and Hispaniola....M. nutans

             23. Leaves abaxially without pilosulous patches in the axils of the secondary veins; plants of seasonal to moist and wet forests.

                  26. Inflorescences pyramidal, with the primary axis longer and more branched than the secondary axes.

                       27. At least some flowers sessile....M. boliviana

                       27. Flowers all pedicellate....M. cymuligera

                  26. Inflorescences corymbiform, with the secondary axes as well as or better developed than the primary axis.

                       28. Pyrenes unridged or with shallow, rounded to acute, longitudinal ridges separated by a smooth to finely rugulose surface.

                            29. Flowers pedicellate; Nicaragua to northeastern Colombia...M. impatiens

                            29. Flowers sessile; southeastern Brazil and Paraguay...M. chaenotricha

                       28. Pyrenes with well developed, rounded, longitudinal ridges and the surface otherwise smooth; northern South America.

                            30. Inflorescences with branched portion 1-3.5 x 1.5-4 cm, the primary axis well developed...M. astrellantha

                            30. Inflorescences with branched portion 0.5-1 x 1.2-3.5 cm, the primary axis shorter than the secondary axes....M. inconspicua

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