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Datasheet for Costus bracteatus

Plant Datasheet for Costus bracteatus


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Photo# 15545 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15546 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15547 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15548 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15549 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15550 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15551 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15552 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15247 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15248 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15249 Specimen# R2960
Costus bracteatus
From cultivated,


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Photo# 15250 Specimen# R0
Costus bracteatus at Lyon Arboretum


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Photo# 15251 Specimen# R0
Costus bracteatus at Rara Avis in Costa Rica


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Photo# 15252 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15253 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15254 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15255 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15256 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15257 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15258 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15259 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15260 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15261 Specimen# R3159
Costus bracteatus
From Panama, Bocas del Toro


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Photo# 15262 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15263 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15264 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15265 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15266 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15267 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15268 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15269 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15270 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15271 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15272 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


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Photo# 15273 Specimen# R3030
Costus bracteatus
From Costa Rica, Limón


CLICK HERE for a detailed botanical description and identification key for this species (opens in new window).
CLICK HERE to see a description of accession #R2935 . (opens in new window).

PLANT FAMILY: Costaceae
BOTANICAL NAME: Costus bracteatus
FORMAL SCIENTIFIC NAME: Costus bracteatus Rowlee
STATUS :Accepted
CONTINENT: Neotropical
SYNONYMS:


BOTANICAL NOTES:
This is believed to be a valid neo-tropical Costus species, although Maas does not distinguish it from Costus claviger in his monographs. Maas in Flora Neotropica No. 8, lists this as an obsolete syn. for Costus guanaiensis. In reviewing GBIF specimen records I found several records where Paul Maas determined specimens with this species name, so he apparently accepts it now. (Collections in Costa Rica, det. by Maas in 1990 to 1992, listed at http://www.mobot.org/manual.plantas/041817/S041817.html). Note that there is also a Costus bracteatus Gleason, shown as nom. illeg.

It is generally accepted as a valid species and is listed in the Flora of Costa Rica as such. It is characterized by its hairy vegetative parts and pendent inflorescence. The bracts are green, appendaged and the flowers are the open labellum type. I have seen it in habitat in Costa Rica and in Panama where it is found on the Caribbean side in low hills to around 500 meters.

The species was described by Rowlee in the Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club, Vol. 49, No. 10, October, 1922 in his article entitled The Genus Costus in Central America. The type is not recorded in GBIF records but in Rowlee's description he gives the locality as follows: Costa Rica in woods on the hillside about a mile south of Siquirres, collection H. E. Stork and Rowlee #675. It was preserved in the herbarium at Cornell University. He further described the locality as follows: "The old Spanish trail from the mouth of the Matina River leads westerly along the foot of the mountains to near Siquirres of the Reventazon River to the central plateau where the sites of Cartago and San Jose are located. Our plant was found near this trail."

In 2014 I completed an IUCN Red List assessment for this species and it is now classified as Least Concern. My assessment can be found at http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/full/56344183/0.

December 2, 2006 - Along the trail between Shiroles and the Valle de Estrella, on Cerro Miradores at about 300 meters this was quite common all along the trail. Most plants had mature inflorescenses and I only found one with fresh flowers. The plant and inflo was identical to the ones seen at Fairchild Tropical Gardens in Miami and at Lyon Arboretum in Hawaii. It is easily distinguishable by the pendent inflo, very hairy plant parts and plicate leaves. The immature inflo shows only the exposed part of the bracts which are green, but as the plant matures and fruits, the exposed red part of the bracts. In later trips I saw this species at Rara Avis in Costa Rica and in the hills above the Rio Bonyic in Panama.

ACCESSION NOTES:
R2935 from Fairchild Gardens where it was tagged incorrectly as Costus allenii based on det. by Tom Wood.

R2960 received from cultivated plant, probably from the Fairchild collection.

R3030 grown from seeds collected in Costa Rica, near Shiroles along the trail to Cerro Mirador.

R3159 grown from seeds collected in Panama, Bocas del Toro in the hills above Rio Bonyic.

OBSERVATION NOTES:

trail in hills above Rio Bonyic, Changuinola, Panama, Latitude 9.3391, Longitude -82.59235, at 400 meters elevation.

Rara Avis, Heredia Province, Sarapiqui, Costa Rica, Latitude 10.28, Longitude -84.04, at 670 meters elevation.

Cerro Mirador, above Shiroles, Limón Province, Costa Rica, Latitude 9.6084, Longitude -82.96, at 400 meters elevation.

GINGERSRUS CATALOG LISTING:
Costus bracteatus is from the Caribbean side of Costa Rica and Panama. It is closely related to C. guanaiensis and at one time was lumped with that species. It has similar bracts and flowers except that the inflorescence is pendent and grows to a long and beautiful hanging garland, either from a basal stem or a terminal stem. The flowers are open white with red stripes. The plant can grow to about 6 feet tall.

I have never tested it outdoors over winter, but I would presume it to be tender and require growing in a greenhouse anywhere colder than UDSA zone 9B. It needs part shade to full light shade as the leaves will burn in full sun.



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