Monographs Details: Melothria guadalupensis (Spreng.) Cogn.
Authority: Britton, Nathaniel L. Flora Borinqueña.
Description:Species Description - A delicate, smooth, slender, herbaceous, broad-leaved vine, with small, yellow flowers, climbing by tendrils, frequent in thickets at lower elevations in Porto Rico, and widely distributed through the West Indies and continental tropical America, only the species here illustrated grows in Porto Rico.
Melothria (from the Greek name of some vine) is a Linnaean genus with some 60 species of slender vines, natives of warm and tropical regions. Their leaves are alternate, their flowers monoecious, the staminate and pistillate ones being borne on the same plant, the staminate clustered, the pistillate often solitary. The bell-shaped calyx is 5-toothed, the corolla, also bell-shaped, deeply 5-parted; the staminate flowers have 3 stamens; in the pistillate flower the ovary is ovoid and contains many, horizontal ovules, the style short, the stigmas 3. The small, pulpy fruit resembles a berry.
Melothria guadalupensis ( from the French island Guadeloupe ), climbs by very slender tendrils and may become about 2 meters long. The rough, thin, wavy-margined, or 3-lobed, or 5-lobed leaves are from 3 to 7 centimeters long, ovate or ovate-lanceolate, pointed, with a deeply heart-shaped base, their stalks slender, from 1 to 4 centimeters long. The staminate flowers are few together, in stalked clusters; the stalks of the solitary, pistillate ones are from 2 to 4 centimeters long; the narrow calyx-teeth are very short; the finely hairy corolla is about 4 millimeters broad, its lobes blunt. The ovoid, red, or purple fruit is from 10 to 15 millimeters long.
Bryonia guadalupensis Sprengel, Systema Vegetabilium 3: 15. 1826
Melothria pervaga Grisabach, Flora of the British West Indian Islands 289. 1860.
Melothria guadalupensis Cogniaux, in De Candolle, Monographia Phanerogamarum 2: 580. 1881.