Monographs Details: Cassia aurivilla Mart. ex Benth.
Authors:Howard S. Irwin, Rupert C. Barneby
Authority: Irwin, Howard S. & Barneby, Rupert C. 1978. Monographic studies in Cassia (Leguminosae, Caesalpinioideae). III. Sections Absus and Grimaldia. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 30: 1-300.
Family:Caesalpiniaceae
Synonyms:Cassia hirsutissima Glaz.
Description:Species Description - Leafy, paniculately ramified shrubs up to 1-2 m, minutely villosulous nearly throughout and the young stems, lf-stalks, margins and lower faces of lfts, and especially the whole inflorescence charged with viscid yellow (or partly purplish) setae up to 1-3 mm, the setae villosulous from base upward 1/3-1/2 their length, the foliage bicolored, on lower face pallid-tomentulose beneath the setae, the paniculate inflorescence far exserted. Stipules linear-setiform, 3-7 mm, tardily deciduous. Lvs spreading-ascending (4-)6-14 cm, shortly petioled or the uppermost subsessile; pulvinus ±1.5 mm, scarcely differentiated; petiole stout, (0.3-)1-2 cm, obscurely sulcate; rachis 3-9 cm, produced as a short appendage; lfts 6-9(10, or of some lowest and uppermost lvs only 3-5) pairs, spreading and tilted slightly forward on setose pulvinule ±1.5 mm, larger upward, in outline ovate to oblong-elliptic (13-)15-36 x (5-)6.5-18 mm, mostly obtuse to emarginate but at tip abruptly acuminulate, at base strongly asymmetric and semicordate, the pectinately setose, entire margins becoming revolute, the blades firmly chartaceous, above brownish or blackish-olivaceous, dull, minutely puberulent and often sparsely setose, beneath densely gray- villous-tomentulose and (especially on nerves) yellow-setose, the eccentric costa and ±7-11 pairs of secondary nerves on upper side filiform pallid superficial, beneath like the connecting tertiaries sharply prominulous, the areoles deeply recessed between them. Inflorescence a few-branched panicle of many-fld racemes, leafless or the lowest branches leafy-bracteate, the branches virgately ascending or erect, sometimes reduced to a single terminal raceme, each floral axis (including peduncle if any) 8-17 cm; bracts linear-caudate ±5 mm, densely setose dorsally, caducous; pedicels ascending, 1-1.7 cm, bracteolate 1.5-4 mm below calyx; bracteoles resembling bracts, up to 3.5 mm, caducous; buds ellipsoid, obtuse, densely villosulous and setulose; sepals elliptic obtuse, 9-12 x 3-4.5 mm, probably reddish when fresh, brown with paler margins when dry; petals yellow, 4 cuneate-obovate or -flabellate, up to 12-15 mm, the fifth oblique and convolute over androecium; ovary densely villosulous and yellow-setulose. Pod unknown. — Collections: 4.

Distribution and Ecology - Cerrado and about rock outcrops, 950-1100 m, local and scattered in centr. and s. Sa. do Espinhapo in lat. 17°-20° 30' S (Montes Claros; Serro Frio; Carapa), w. to Sa. do Cabral, in centr. and n.-centr. Minas Gerais. — Fl. V-VI. "Habitat in campis editis Serra Frio, prov. Minas Geraes: Martius."

Discussion:

Fittingly described by Glaziou as "arbuste superbe", the plants are striking for the dense armament of viscid golden setae that clothes the young stems, foliage and all axes of the compound inflorescence.

The species is related to C. ursina and C. astrochiton, both of which have pubescent setae. The former has sordid grayish pubescence and sharply engraved tertiary venation of the leaflets while the latter differs in its corymbosely short-branched inflorescence combined with delicate stellate setae, the central column of which is reduced to a filiform bristle hardly stouter or longer than the hairs arising from its bulbous base. A third related species is C. xanthadena, similar in venation of the leaflets but different in their smaller number, mostly four or five pairs, coinciding with shorter, fully glabrous setules on stems, foliage and inflorescence.

Distribution:Minas Gerais Brazil South America| Brazil South America|

Narratives:Cassia aurivilla