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Gingersrus Database Taxon ID 6148

synonym of Dimerocostus argenteus

OLD NAME: Dimerocostus strobilaceus subsp. gutierrezii

NEW NAME: synonym of Dimerocostus argenteus

NAME CHANGE NOTES: The orignal type of this subsp. was misinterpreted and is now determined as a syn. of D. argenteus


STATUS : stat. nov.

CONTINENT: Neotropical

FIELD OBSERVATIONS:(If field observations are available, you can click on the link to open in a new window.)

PHOTOS:(If photos are available, you can click on the link to open in a new window.)


Dimerocostus strobilaceus subspecies gutierrezii was based upon an 1892 collection in southern Bolivia on the Rio Yapacaní by Otto Kuntze. The holotype at NY is in poor condition and contains only an inflorescence, lacking leaves or stems that might be used to further identify the taxon. On the tag at the NYBG herbarium there is a note interpreting the locality of the collection as the town of Puerto Gutiérrez at 17° 11' S, 63° 57' W. The explanation of the locality as given in 1898 by Kuntze himself is (translated from the German): "Bolivia: common on the Rio Yapacani, especially at the 'Puerto', the shipping point, which is used by Dr. Guttierez in San Ignazio and to which he had an 8 leagues long path, 5 of which were made through primeval forest." The Kuntze description in Rivisio Generum Planterum III.III, pg 301-302 is as basic as the specimen and gives no information whatsoever about the flowers.

In March of 2017 I traveled to that region to look for the living plants to see what Kuntze' Dimerocostus gutierrezii might look like in vivo. What I found was all consistent in form to Dimerocostus argenteus, throughout the region on both sides of the Rio Yapicaní, from a small reserve south of Buena Vista to the La Chonta sector of the Amboro National Park. This form has leaves with silvery undersides and a hooded pale yellow flower - with no morphological basis to describe the Kuntze plant as a separate species. The Inaturalist link above will take you to all my field observations of Dimerocostus in the region - in my opinion all are Dimerocostus argenteus.When I later explained what I had found and showed my photos to Paul Maas, he agreed that the plants growing there are examples of D. argenteus, and that the Kuntze type specimen had been misinterpreted. He has proposed placing this subsp. of D. strobilaceus into synonymy with Dimerocostus argenteus.


ACCESSIONS:Click links (if any) to see details of individual collections.

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Photos (if available) of Taxon ID 6148