Pavonia sepium A.St.-Hil.

  • Authority

    Fryxell, Paul A. 1999. Cavanilles (Malvaceae). Fl. Neotrop. Monogr. 76: 1-284. (Published by NYBG Press)

  • Family


  • Scientific Name

    Pavonia sepium A.St.-Hil.

  • Type

    Type. Brazil. Near Sebastianopolis, St.-Hilaire 50B (holotype, P as photo CTES; isotype fragments, CTES, F).

  • Synonyms

    Sida malvacea Vell., Typhalea malvacea (Vell.) Monteiro, Pavonia malvacea (Vell.) Krapov. & Cristóbal, Pavonia flava Spring ex Mart., Malache flava (Spring ex Mart.) Kuntze, Pavonia flava var. grandifolia Spring ex Mart., Pavonia grandifolia Spring ex Walp., Pavonia gardneriana Turcz., Pavonia sepium var. silvatica Arechav., Malache sepium (A.St.-Hil.) Kuntze, Lassa sepium (A.St.-Hil.) Kuntze

  • Description

    Species Description - Shrubs 1-2 m tall, the stems slender, glabrescent or with narrow rows of more or less recurved hairs. Leaf blades mostly 5-10(-15) x 2-5 cm, ovate to lanceolate (or subelliptic), widest below the middle, truncate or subcordate, serrate, acuminate, palmately 3-5-nerved, sparsely pubescent (especially on nerves), with tufts of fine hairs (domatia?) in the axils of the principal nerves beneath and often in the axils of the secondary nerves as well; petioles 4-15 mm long, pubescent distally and on adaxial side; stipules 5-11 mm long, linear-lanceolate. Flowers solitary in the leaf axils or on lateral axillary branchlets, the pedicels slender, 1.5-6 cm long, evenly and minutely pubescent; involucellar bracts usually 6, lanceolate or oblanceolate, 5-8 mm long, sparsely pubescent; calyx 5-6 mm long, sparsely ciliate, sometimes basally pallid; corolla 8-15(-20) mm long, yellow; staminal column 3-6 mm long, glabrous, pallid, the filaments ca. 1 mm long; styles emergent from the column, pallid. Fruits 6-8 mm diam., the mericarp body 5-6 mm high, glabrous, reticulate-veined, the mericarps each with 3 apical spines, the spines 3-6 mm long, divergent, retrorsely barbed, the barbs usually confined to the spines. Chromosome number, 2n = 56 (Krapovickas & Cristóbal, 1965, as P. malvacea); 2n = 112 (Skovsted, 1941, possibly a misidentification of P. communis?).

  • Discussion

    Illustrations. Gürke (1892b: pl. 86, fig. 1); Krapovickas (1953: fig. 107B).

    Giirke (1892b), like Cavanilles (1787), confounded Pavonia sepium and P. spinifex by citing South American specimens under P. spinifex var. genuina, a confusion that has been perpetuated by subsequent authors (e.g., Krapovickas, 1978b). The two species are not only allopatric but also morphologically distinct (Table IV) and need not be confused. However, the “P. sepium complex” presents problems that are only partially resolved here. Pavonia sepium s.str. is here seen to include only those plants occurring in southern Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, Argentina, and Bolivia, all south of the 20° parallel of latitude, generally at relatively low elevation, but up to 800-1800 m in western Argentina and Bolivia. It is clearly distinguished by the presence of tufts of hairs in the axils of the principal nerves on the underside of the leaf and often in the axils of the secondary nerves as well. Also found in this region are P. ramosissima, P. narcissi, and P. formosa, often occurring sympatrically with P. sepium. All of these species lack these tufts of hairs and are otherwise distinguishable from P sepium (see key). In addition, P. ramosissima differs ecologically from P. sepium (A. Krapovickas, pers. comm.), in that Pavonia sepium occurs only deep within shaded woodlands, whereas, P ramosissima is found on woodland borders in more open habitats. The other elements in this complex are P. communis (of a different ploidy level and readily distinguished morphologically), P. spinifex (allopatric and readily distinguished morphologically, Table IV), and the preceding species, P. sepioides, which is allopatric but has been freely confused with P. sepium in the past.

    Stadler et al. (1987) have shown that Pavonia sepium (as P. malvacea) serves as a host of the cotton Stainer (Dysdercus albofasciatus Berg), an important insect pest of cotton, and thus as a reservoir of the pest for reinfestation of the cotton crop in Argentina.

  • Distribution

    Found S of the 20° parallel of latitude in Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina, and Bolivia, generally at low elevation, but up to 800-1800 m in W Argentina and Bolivia. The type locality for Pavonia sepium is at 20°41'S, 49°56'W.

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