Monographs Details: Clidemia pakaraimae Wurdack
Authority: Maguire, Bassett & Wurdack, John J. 1964. The botany of the Guayana Highland--Part V. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 10: 1-278.
Family:Melastomataceae
Description:Latin Diagnosis - Sect. Sagraea. C. cymifcrae Donn. Sm. affinis sed foliis maioribus paniculae ramis crassis hypanthiis non stellulato-furfuraceis ovario omnino infero. Rami primum quadrangulares demum compresso-quadrangulares infra nodos tumidi vesicis binis vel solitariis 1-2 cm longis 0.5-1 cm altis hypanthiis petioliisque non setosis vel primum sparsissime glanduloso-setosis demum glabratis petiolis foliis juvenilibus inflorescentiis hypanthiisque dense appresseque resinosofurfuracei tarde laeves. Petioli 6-12 cm; lamina 15-28 X 9-21 cm ovata apice per 1.5-2.5 cm graditer acuminata et apiculata basi 0.5-2.5 cm cordata tenuiter coriacea, supra et subtus non setulosa ad margines integra et ciliolata pilis appressis ca. 0.5 mm longis 0.3-0.5 mm inter se distantibus, 7- vel sub-9-nervata nervis secundariis 5-8 mm inter se distantibus nervulis supra invisis subtus densiuscule reticulatis. Panicula 4-5 cm longa lataque pauciflora ramulis robustis compressis 1-2 mm crassis; bracteae bracteolaeque 1-3 mm longae triangulares acutae persistentes; pedicelli 1-3 mm longi robusti; flores 4-meri. Hypanthium 4 mm longum; calycis tubus 1 mm altus, lobis interioribus 0.5 mm altis oblatis apice rotundatis, dentibus exterioribus 0.8 mm eminentibus linearibus crassis hebeti-acutis vel setuloso-apiculatis; torus non setulosus. Petala 7 X 3.3-3.5 mm obovato-oblonga apice truncato-rotundata. Stamina isomorphica glabra; filamenta 4.5-4.8 mm; antherarum thecae lineares 2.1 mm longae apice retusae poro 0.2 mm diam dorsaliter inclinato, connectivo basi 1-1.2 mm prolongato simpliciter articulato. Stylus 6.5 X 0.5-0.7 mm glaber; stigma 0.8 mm diam capitulatum; ovarium 4-loculare omnino inferum glabrum.

Discussion:

Type. Shrub to 3 m, flowers creamy white, locally frequent in wet forest, Merume Mountain, Partang River, upper Mazaruni River basin, alt. 1140 m, 1 Jul 1960, Stephen S. Tillett, Carolyn L. Tillett, & Rufas Boyan 43919 (holotype US 2343841).

C. cymifera has leaf blades only 5-12 cm long, slender cyme branches only 0.5 mm diam at most, and a 1/3 superior ovary; the stems, lower leaf surface veins, inflorescence, and hypanthium are stellulate-furfuraceous. Otherwise, the Guatemalan species is quite similar in qualitative floral details. C. ampla Cogn. (which is very similar to, if not synonymous with C. grandifolia Cogn.) is more distantly related; the young stems and petioles are densely lax-strigulose with roughened hairs, the bracts are setulose-ciliolate, the flowers are much smaller, and the well-developed ovarian collar is apically setulose. I do not know if the nodal swellings of C. pakaraimae are genetic or pathologic—the occasional unilateral development suggests the latter. Certainly these inflations differ in appearance from the cauline formicaria of C. tococoidea (DC.) Gleason.

C. pakaraimae does not suggest any affinity with C. coriacea (Naud.) Cogn. and its close relative, C. duidae Gleason; both of these cumbre species have terminal inflorescences and probably should be transferred to Miconia, perhaps among the 4-merous species of Sect. Octomeris. I have continued to use the later homonym, C. coriacea (Naud.) Cogn. (1888), in identifications until the best generic disposition can be found; the name is antedated by C. coriacea Naud. (1852) which is Ossaea coriacea (Naud.) Tr. From the minute morphologic similarities, I also feel that Leandra linearis Gleas. (known only in fruit) is a close relative of the two anomalous species of Clidemia and should share their eventual generic fate.