Begonia serotina A.DC.

Moonlight, Peter. W., Jara-Muñoz, Orlando A., Purvis, David A., Delves, Jay, Allen, Josh P. & Reynel, Carlos, 2023, The genus Begonia (Begoniaceae) in Peru, European Journal of Taxonomy 881, pp. 1-334 : 219-221

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Begonia serotina A.DC.


54. Begonia serotina A.DC. View in CoL View at ENA

Fig. 65C View Fig

Annales des Sciences Naturelles Botanique, Série 4 11: 121 ( de Candolle 1859).

– Type: ECUADOR – Prov. Guayaquil: Cerro of Santana • [2°11′ S, 79°53′ W]; May 1846; W. Jameson 594; lectotype: K [ K000536583 ], designated by Smith & Wasshausen (1986: 42); GoogleMaps isolectotypes: BM [ BM000832009 ], G, G-BOIS [ F neg. 8519], G-DC ex G-BOIS, G-DC ex herb. Peterop. [2], MO [ MO-313009 ], OXF [ OXF00068960 View Materials ], TCD [ TCD0005557 View Materials ]. GoogleMaps

de Candolle (1864: 285); Smith & Schubert (1952: 40); Smith & Wasshausen (1979: 244, 1986, 42); Quintana & León-Yáñez (2011: 200); Tebbitt et al. (2015: 347).

Begonia parmata Irmsch., Botanische Jahrbücher View in CoL für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie 74: 611 ( Irmscher 1949).

– Type: ECUADOR – [Prov. Guayas] • Tal des río Chanchan, bei Naranjapata ; [2°13′ S, 79°25′ W]; 25 Sep. 1933; L. Diels 1213; holotype: B [ B100243088 ]. GoogleMaps

Irmscher (1953: 90); Smith & Wasshausen (1979: 244); Tebbitt et al. (2015: 347).

Begonia asympeltata L.B.Sm. & Wassh., Phytologia 44: 244 ( Smith & Wasshausen 1979). View in CoL

– Type: ECUADOR – Prov. Los Ríos • Hacienda Clementina; [1°22′ S, 79°52′ W]; 27 Jan. 1947; G. Harling 201; holotype: S [ S-04-711 ]. GoogleMaps

Smith & Wasshausen (1986: 40); Tebbitt et al. (2015: 347).


The epithet derives from the Latin ‘ serotinus ’, meaning ‘late coming’. This term can apply to any part of the plant and it is unclear to which Alphonse de Candolle was referring. Given that the plant is deciduous, he may however have been referring to the late arrival of the species’ leaves.

Specimen examined

PERU – Tumbes Region: Prov. Zarumilla • Entre P.C. “El Caucho” y P.C. “Campoverde”, bosque Nacional de Tumbes , reserva de Biósfera del Norveste ; 3°50′29″ S, 80°15′33″ W; 720 m a.s.l.; C. Díaz, H. Horna & E. Peña 4708; F, HUT, MO [ MO-2228062 ], NY, US [ US00672879 ], USM. GoogleMaps


Caulescent, rhizomatous herb, to 50 cm high. Rhizome ellipsoid, 5–20 × 0.8–2.5 cm, with 1 growing point. Stem horizontal to erect, rarely branching; internodes to 20 cm long, to 25 mm thick, appearing woody, brown, glabrous. Stipules persistent, ovate, 11–13 × 4–8 mm, apex acute, apiculate, pale green, glabrous, margin entire, aciliate. Leaves 1–5, alternate, peltate; petiole 5–40 cm long, pale green, glabrous to puberulent; blade subsymmetric, ovate to orbicular, to 19 × 20.5 cm, succulent, apex short-acuminate, base rounded, occasionally cordate, margin denticulate to dentate, ciliate, upper surface dark green, sometimes flushed dark green or purple between the veins, glabrous to sparsely pubescent, lower surface pale green, glabrous to sparsely pubescent, veins peltate but with one primary vein, 8–10 veined from the base, with 2–4 secondary veins on the larger side, 2–4 secondary veins on the smaller side. Inflorescences 1–4, bisexual, axillary, erect, cymose, with up to 6 branches, bearing up to 16 staminate flowers and 16 pistillate flowers, protandrous; peduncle to 52 cm long, green, glabrous, bracts deciduous, narrowly elliptic to ovate, 1–5(–12) × 0.75–3(–7) mm, translucent, white, glabrous, apex subacute, margin entire, aciliate. Staminate flowers: pedicels to 14 mm long, glabrous; tepals 4, spreading, outer 2 elliptic to ovate, 6–14 × 4–6.5 mm, apex obtuse, white, glabrous, margin entire, aciliate, inner 2 oblanceolate, 4.5–8 × 2–4.5 mm, apex obtuse, white, glabrous, margin entire, aciliate; stamens 35–60, spreading, yellow, filaments 1–2 mm long, fused at the base, anthers ovoid, 0.5–0.75 × 0.5 mm long, dehiscing via lateral slits, connectives not extended, symmetrically basifixed. Pistillate flowers: pedicels to 26 mm long; bracteoles lacking; tepals 5, subequal, persistent in fruit, spreading, narrowly elliptic to ovate, 3.5–7.5 × 1.5–4 mm, apex acute to obtuse, white, glabrous, margin entire, aciliate; ovary body ellipsoid, 6–11 × 4–6 mm, white flushed pink, glabrous, sub-equally 3-winged, wings triangular, largest 1–4 × 7–16 mm; styles 3, yellow, free, 1.5–4 mm long, once-divided, stigmatic papillae in a spirally twisted band. Fruiting pedicel to 25 mm long. Fruit body ovoid, to 13 × 10 mm, drying brown, wings same shape as in ovary, the largest expanding to 15 × 21 mm, the smallest expanding to 10 × 21 mm.

Proposed conservation assessment

Recently assessed as Vulnerable (VU) by Tebbitt et al. (2015).

Typification notes

Tebbitt et al. (2015) cited a holotype of B. serotina in “G-DEL” herbarium, which was incorporated into the main herbarium in Geneva. However, no holotype exists as no herbaria were cited in the protologue ( de Candolle 1859: 121; see McNeill 2014). An earlier citation of a sheet of the type gathering in K herbarium as the holotype ( Smith & Wasshausen 1986) constitutes an effective lectotypification of this species. This is a highly appropriate lectotype as it was seen by A.P. de Candolle and is amongst the highest quality of the many duplicates of the type gathering.

Identification notes

Begonia serotina is one of just three Peruvian terrestrial begonias with large (> 10 × 10 cm), peltate leaf laminae. The others are B. joshii and B. urubambensis , which differ in lacking an aerial stem.

Distribution and ecology

Known from Ecuador and Peru, and in Peru it has been collected in Tumbes Region ( Fig. 65C View Fig ). Found in dry forests and scrubland at an elevation of 720 m a.s.l., but also known from montane forests in Ecuador. It typically grows in humid and shaded microhabitats, such as moist cliffs.




Royal Botanic Gardens


Bristol Museum


Conservatoire et Jardin botaniques de la Ville de Genève


Field Museum of Natural History, Botany Department


Missouri Botanical Garden


University of Oxford


Trinity College


Botanischer Garten und Botanisches Museum Berlin-Dahlem, Zentraleinrichtung der Freien Universitaet


Department of Botany, Swedish Museum of Natural History


HUT Culture Collection


William and Lynda Steere Herbarium of the New York Botanical Garden


Universiti Sains Malaysia














Begonia serotina A.DC.

Moonlight, Peter. W., Jara-Muñoz, Orlando A., Purvis, David A., Delves, Jay, Allen, Josh P. & Reynel, Carlos 2023

Begonia asympeltata L.B.Sm. & Wassh., Phytologia 44: 244 ( Smith & Wasshausen 1979 ).

Smith & Wasshausen 1979: 244
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