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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 1/28/2013)
 

Flora Data (Last Modified On 1/28/2013)
Genus IRESINE P. Br.
PlaceOfPublication Br. Hist. Jam. 358. 1756.
Synonym Trommnsdorjjia Mart. Nov. Gen. & Sp. 2:40. 1826. Rosea Mart. loc. cit. 58. 1826. Xerandra Raf. Fl. Tell. 3:43. 1837. Ireneis Moq. in DC. Prodr. 132:349. 1849.
Description Flowers perfect, polygamous or dioecious, bracteate and bibracteolate, subsessile in spikes or glomes. Sepals 5, discrete, hypogynous, concave, subequal, becoming scariose, often with conspicuous tufts of hairs between the sepals and the bracteoles. Stamens 5, the filaments flattened and united below into an entire or appendiculate tube; anthers bilocellate, oblong, introrse, medially attached. Ovary I-locular, 1- ovulate; ovule campylotropous on an elongate flattened funicle; stigmata 2-3, filiform or deltoid. Fruit an indehiscent utricle; seeds cochleate-orbiculate, whitish or reddish brown, smooth. Glabrous to copiously pubescent herbs, shrubs, trees or clambering vines. Leaves opposite, entire to denticulate, petiolate, glabrous to sericeous, herbaceous to coriaceous. Inflorescences of spikes or glomes, paniculately disposed, the branching alternate, opposite or verticillate.
Distribution This heterogeneous genus, of some forty species, is largely if not wholly native to the Americas.
Note I have seen no specimens, except of the cultivant Iresine herbstii Hook., from outside the Americas and the West Indies. Iresine herbstii is culti- vated in many places for its attractive variegated red and yellow foliage, but I have seen no specimens from Panama. The genus, and especially the polygamous and dioecious species, are sorely in need of revision. Four species are known to occur in Panama.
Key a. Flowers perfect or polygamous; spikes ovoid or globose, pedunculate, alternate, opposite or verticillate on the rhachis; seeds whitish or reddish brown; style about half as long as the stigmata; herbaceous or suffruticose perennials, often clambering. b. Leaves near the inflorescence ovate or elliptic, their petioles amplexi- caul; spikes mostly opposite or verticillate; rhachises obviously cinereous-pubescent; stigmata deltoid, scarcely reflexed; seeds whitish. c. Leaves densely pubescent below; intrafloral hairs about equaling the calyx; pseudostaminodia bilobate; utricle 1-1.3 mm. long ......... 1. I. HIASSIERIANA cc. Leaves sparsely strigose below; intrafloral hairs about twice as long as the calyx; pseudostaminodia deltoid or absent; utricle 1.5-2 mm. long -.............. 2. I. COMPLETA bb. Leaves near the inflorescence linear or lanceolate, their petioles mostly not amplexicaul; spikes mostly alternate; rhachises glabrate or obscurely puberulent; stigmata filiform, ultimately reflexed; seeds reddish brown ......-........ 3. 1. ANGUSTIFOLIA aa. Flowers strictly dioecious; spikes filiform or narrowly pyramidal, mostly sessile, alternate on the rhachis; seeds reddish brown; style obsolete, less than a third as long as the filiform stigmata; herbaceous upright or ascending perennials................................ 4. I. CELOSIA
 
 
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