Monographs Details: Eugenia chrysophyllum Poir.
Authority: Maguire, Bassett. 1969. The botany of the Guayana Highland-part VIII. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 18: 1-290.
Family:Myrtaceae
Description:Distribution and Ecology - V E N E Z U E L A . Bolivar: Rio Pargueni, middle Orinoco, elev 90-100 m, 11 Dec1955 (fl), Wurdack & Monachino 39788 (MICH). S U R I N A M E . Maratakka River,17 Nov 1917 {ix),B.W. 3492 (U; also cited by Amshoff in the Flora of Suriname);Nassau Mountains, Marowijne River, forested slopes, elev 400-550 m, 3 Jan 1955(fl). Cowan & Lindeman 39142 ( M I C H ) . BRAZIL. Amazonas: Barcelos, RioAraca, afl. do Rio Negro, 29 Apr 1952 (imm fr), Froes 28367 CNIICH).

Discussion:

Eugenia chrysophylloides D C , DC. Prodr. 3: 276. 1828.

This name has been apphed to a wide variety of plants with moderately large coriaceous leaves, midvein convex or biconvex on the upper surface, appressed reddish pubescence on the young growth, small fasciculate pedicellate flowers and elongate fruit. Judging by the very few collections that have been available for study, the true Eugenia chrysophyllum is of rather restricted distribution in the Guianas, but perhaps it also occurs in the Amazon lowlands.

Candolle (DC. Prodr. 3: 272. 1828) correctly pointed out that the type-locality of Eugenia chrysophyllum was "in Cayenna" not Mauritius ("He de France") as Poiret had originally supposed. De Candolle studied additional specimens from Cayenne, supposedly of the same species (collected by Patris and Perrottet), and described the flowers as "subsessilibus adgregatis," whereas those of his own E. chrysophylloides were described as "evidenter pedicellati et breviter racemosi." The type of the latter species came also from "Cayenna."

The type of Eugenia chrysophyllum is in the herbarium of Desfontaines, now at FI, where I was permitted to study it in 1966. It is labelled "Cayenne ^Martin," as reported by Amshoff (Rec. Trav. Bot. Neerl. 4 2 : 15. 1950). The specimen from Poiret's own herbarium, now at P, where I saw it in 1965, is marked, presumably by Poiret, "Eugenia chrysophyllum (N.) enc. Suppl. Commers. isle de fr." Evidently these represent the same species. The leaves are relatively narrow and long-acuminate, up to 5 cm wide and 12 cm long, conspicuously silky-pubescent beneath with bright golden hairs, somewhat impressed-punctate above when young; the midvein on the upper surface is convex or somewhat channeled and biconvex, but depressed a little below the surface; the petioles are 6-8 m m long; the raceme-axis is 2-3 m m long or less, rufous-hirsutulous, the pedicels in flower 5 m m long or less, appressed-hirsutulous with red-brown hairs; bracteoles pubescent hke the pedicels, persistent, 0.5 m m long and about as wide; hypanthium campanulate, shorter than the calyx-lobes, densely appressed-pubescent; calyx-lobes obtusely triangular, glabrous within, about 2 m m long and wide, thinly pubescent outside; petals glabrous; fruit pyriform, 1 cm long. The type of Eugenia chrysophylloides, as also noted by Amshoff, proves to represent the same species (cf Field Mus. neg. 7935). The characters of flatfish but depressed midvein, punctate leaves, red pubescence (somewhat faded in the type), calyx-lobes glabrous within, and ellipsoid fruit are exactly those of E. chrysophyllum. The difference between the inflorescences noted by De Candolle seems not to be significant.

The specimen collected by Cowan and Lindeman may represent another taxon; the leaves are unusuahy smooth above, the midvein is nearly flat, and the lower leafsurface is not very densely golden-pubescent; it is described by the collectors as "grayish with golden sheen." Additional specimens representing the complex that includes Eugenia chrysophyllum, E. exaltata, etc, are cited in the list of Doubtful Species at the end of this paper. Evidently the complex includes a number of local populations that differ from one another slightly in leaf-shape and in pubescence, but none of them has been well collected, and they cannot as yet be satisfactorily separated in the herbarium.

Distribution:Venezuela South America| Suriname South America| Brazil South America|