Gingersrus Database Taxon ID 7610
OLD NAME: Costus laevis - skutchii form
NEW NAME: Costus kuntzei
NAME CHANGE NOTES: former C. laevis from Pacific side of Central America like synonym Costus skutchii
FULL SCIENTIFIC NAME:
STATUS : distinct form
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.)
This is the plant form most commonly associated with the species Costus kuntzei. It grows to about 2-3 meters tall and is characterized by a longer, often deeply lobed ligule and long purplish petioles. The bract and flower colors can be somewhat variable but usually the bracts are dark puple with greenish apices and the flowers, including the corolla lobes are usually red with red striped labellums. This form is most common on the Pacific side in southern Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia and northwestern Ecuador.
I am basing this grouping of Costus kuntzei on the plant collected in 1936 by Alexander Skutch in Costa Rica, on his own property near San Isidro del General (a/k/a PÃ©rez ZeledÃ³n) in Puntarenas province on the Pacific side of the Talamanca mountains. I have not yet been there to see this plant form, but based on location and on the herbarium specimen I think it will typify this form of the species Costus kuntzei . Photos and observations of this form are included on this page.
In the Caluma area, Bolivar province, Ecuador, I saw plants that look close to the "skutchii" form of C, kintzei, but with red flowers and green bracts. My thumbnail sheet of this can be seen at
In northwestern Ecuador I found a beautiful form with solid cherry red bracts and flowers that I have given the cultivar name 'Lita Red'. It is described further on a separate web page at PID#7517.
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