Monographs Details: Jacquemontia subsalina Britton
Authority: Britton, Nathaniel L. Flora Borinqueña.
Description:Species Description - This small-flowered, prostrate, trailing, herbaceous vine is an inconspicuous, but locally abundant plant of saline or alkaline soils along or near the coasts of Porto Rico, Cuba and Jamaica, and, in so far as our observations indicate, it is restricted to such environment, growing on plains little elevated above the sea. It is plentiful in such situations near the southern coast of Porto Rico, from the vicinity of Salinas west to the Mona Passage, sometimes carpeting the ground, and attractive when in bloom by its blue or lavender flowers. During the Soil Survey of Porto Rico, this plant was pointed out, among others, as certainly indicative of salinity or alkalinity. Like some other prostrate plants, it develops secondary roots at nodes of the stem and branches; these doubtless aid in supplying it with more water than it would get without them; plants with this habit are termed radicant. We give an account of the genus Jacquemontia with our description of the larger-flowered Jacquemontia pentantha, and 4 other species also inhabit Porto Rico.
Jacquemontia subsalina is a slender, fleshy, sparingly hairy vine, which may reach a length of about a meter, but is usually shorter, and it sends out occasional tufts of roots along its stems or branches. Its leaves are oval, sometimes nearly orbicular, stalked, smooth, from 3 to about 20 millimeters long, with a rounded or notched apex. The flowers are solitary, or 2 together, on very slender stalks shorter than the leaves; the 3 outer sepals are oval, and about 3 millimeters long, the 2 inner ones about as long but much narrower; the corolla has a short tube, and a widely spreading limb about a centimeter broad. The globose capsule is about 6 millimeters in diameter.
Our illustration was first published in "Addisonia", plate 499, September 1930.
Jacquemontia subsalina Britton & Wilson, Scientific Survey of Porto Rico and the Virgin Islands 6: 106.1925.