Miconia atropurpurea Gamba & Almeda, 2014

Gamba, Diana & Almeda, Frank, 2014, Systematics of the Octopleura Clade of Miconia (Melastomataceae: Miconieae) in Tropical America, Phytotaxa 179 (1), pp. 1-174 : 57-60

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https://doi.org/ 10.11646/phytotaxa.179.1.1



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scientific name

Miconia atropurpurea Gamba & Almeda

nom. nov.

7. Miconia atropurpurea Gamba & Almeda , nom. nov. Basionym: Melastoma purpurea Pavón, Mss. Clidemia purpurea Pav. ex Don (1823: 308) . Type: ECUADOR (In Peruviâ). Guayaquil (In Huayaquil), 1899, Tafalla s.n. (not Pavón s.n.) (holotype: BM; isotypes: F-internet image!, MA). Nec Miconia purpurea (Don) Judd & Skean (1991: 62) .

Clidemia cyanocarpa Bentham (1844: 94) . Type : ECUADOR-COLOMBIA border ( Grenada), Tumaco, December 1836, Barclay 879 (holotype: K-internet image!; isotype: BM-internet image!).

Clidemia haughtii Wurdack (1960: 238–239) . Type: COLOMBIA. Dept. Santander: vicinity of Puerto Berrio between Carare and Magdalena rivers, headwaters of Dorada Creek , 12 km Sof Raizudo, 300 m, 6 May 1937, Haught 2193 (holotype: US-internet image!; isotypes: NY-internet image!, COL-internet image!).

Suffrutescent diffusely branched herb or shrub 0.5–4 m tall. Upper internodes [3.1–7.1(–9.3) cm long] and cauline nodes terete, nodal line absent. Indumentum on branchlets, petioles, primary, secondary, tertiary and higher order veins abaxially, inflorescence axes, pedicels, bracts, bracteoles, hypanthia, calyx lobes abaxially, and exterior calyx teeth densely to moderately composed of brownish sessile or thinly stipitate dendritic trichomes 0.1–0.2 mm long with short axes and few-moderate number of terete arms, typically copiously to sparsely intermixed with elongate


Phytotaxa 179 (1) © 2014 Magnolia Press 57 smooth trichomes 1–3 mm long occasionally early caducous. Leaves of each pair notably anisophyllous in size (ca. 1:2), some pairs more or less isophyllous; the petiole 0.4–2 cm long, canaliculate adaxially and shallowly to moderately grooved abaxially; larger blades 10–14(–22) × 5–7 cm, smaller blades 4–7 × 2.5–3.5 cm, elliptic to elliptic-ovate, the base broadly acute to obtuse and slightly oblique, the margin ciliate (cilia to 1 mm) or eciliate, distantly undulate-serrulate, the apex short-acuminate to acuminate, membranaceous; mature leaves adaxially sparsely strigose with red-pink elongate smooth trichomes 1.5–3 mm long or glabrous, the primary, secondary, tertiary and higher order veins glabrous; abaxial surface typically flushed red-purple, sparsely strigillose with redpink elongate smooth trichomes 0.5–1 mm long to glabrescent, the tertiary and higher order veins glabrescent; 5- or 7-nerved to 5- or 7-plinerved, including the tenuous marginals, innermost pair of secondary veins separating asymmetrically from the primary vein at ca. 0.3 cm above the base, areolae 0.5–1 mm, adaxially the primary and secondary veins impressed, the tertiary and higher order veins flat, abaxially the primary and secondary veins elevated and terete, the tertiary and higher order veins flat. Inflorescences a pseudolateral group of few-flowered modified dichasia 2–3 cm long, sessile or including a peduncle to 0.25 cm long, branching poorly developed with two to three paracladia from a short axis, borne on the upper foliar nodes; bracts 0.2–0.4 × 0.25 mm, bracteoles 0.3–0.5 × 0.25 mm, minute, lanceolate and shortly aristate at the apex, commonly early deciduous at anthesis. Flowers 5-merous, subsessile or on pedicels 0.3–0.4 mm long. Hypanthia at anthesis 2.9–3.2 × 1.5–1.7 mm, free portion of hypanthium 1.7–2 mm long, suburceolate, bluntly 10-ribbed, red to purple, the dendritic trichomes sparse and early caducous, the elongate smooth trichomes 1–1.3 mm long persistent and spreading, ridged on the inner surface, along with the torus minutely and densely glandular adaxially, the glands rounded and sessile, the torus (adaxially) rarely glabrous. Calyx open in bud and persistent in fruit; tube ca. 0.2 mm long, with the same vestiture as the torus adaxially and as the hypanthia abaxially; lobes 0.3–0.5 × ca. 1 mm, oblate, the margin vaguely undulate, the apex obtuse, copiously papillose adaxially; exterior calyx teeth 0.1–0.15 mm long, minute, bluntly conic and aristate, inserted at the basal half of the calyx lobes and not projecting beyond them. Petals 1.3–1.6(–1.8) × 1.2–1.5 mm, broadly obovate to suborbicular, the margin entire, the apex obtuse to slightly truncate, white, densely papillose on both surfaces, reflexed at anthesis. Stamens 10; filaments 1.5–2 × 0.25 mm, white, glabrous; anther thecae 1.5–1.8 × 0.4–0.5 mm, linear-oblong and moderately subulate, obtuse at the apex, opening by one dorsally inclined pore 0.1 mm in diameter, cream to light yellow at anthesis; connective yellow, its prolongation and appendage 0.25–0.35 mm long, the appendage orbicular, obtuse at the apex, moderately gland-edged and sparsely beset with minute sessile rounded glands also present throughout the connective. Ovary 5-locular, completely inferior, 1.2–1.5 mm long at anthesis, the apical collar absent, the apex 0.35 mm in diameter, truncate to slightly depressed, densely glandular-puberulent; style 3.5–4 mm long, narrowed distally (i.e. tapering), white, glabrous; stigma truncate to expanded truncate when dry. Berries 4.11–4.4 × 4.24–4.9 mm when dry, globose and somewhat oblate, initially red, turning red-purple and ultimately blue when ripe, the hypanthial indumentum somewhat persistent at maturity. Seeds 0.33–0.57 × 0.17–0.19 mm, ovoid, angled, light-brown; lateral and antiraphal symmetrical planes ovate, the highest point toward the chalazal side; raphal zone suboblong, ca. 60–70% larger than the corpus of the seed, extending along its entire length, ventrally and longitudinally expanded, occasionally also expanding along the chalazal side beyond the highest point of the seed, dark-brown; individual cells elongate, anticlinal boundaries inconspicuous; periclinal walls flat, microrelief punctate.

Additional specimens studied:— COLOMBIA. Chocó: (San José del Palmar-Nóvita), Alrededores del campamento de Curundó, fin de la carretera en construcción cerca al Río Ingará , 450 m, 30 August 1976, Forero et al. 2370 ( COL, MO) ; Río San Juan just above Istmina, 100 m, 14 August 1976, Gentry & Fallen 17652 ( MO, US) ; Río Mutatá, tributary of Río El Valle , between base of Alto Buey and mouth of river, 100–150 m, 9 August 1976, Gentry & Fallen 17473 ( COL, MO, NY, US) ; Río Mutatá, tributary of Río El Valle , between base of Alto Buey and mouth of river, 100–150 m, 7 August 1976, Gentry & Fallen 17299 ( COL, MO, NY) ; Vicinity of Bahia Solano on steep slopes Sof town, 5°13’N, 76°20’W, 50 m, 14 March 1984, Croat 57439 ( US); ( Bahía Solano ) GoogleMaps , 13 February 1947, Haught 5572 ( US) . Valle: (Buenaventura), Vereda Bellavista, P.N.N. Farallones, Sector Bajo Anchicayá, Zona en cercanías de la Draga , 3°36.906’N, 76°54.107’W, 225 m, 11 January 2013, Alvear et al. 1568 ( CAS, COL) GoogleMaps . ECUADOR. Esmeraldas: (Quininde), The Mache-Chindul Ecological R., Bilsa Biological Station, Mache mountains, 35 km Wof Quinindé, 0°21’N, 79°44’W, 500 m, 6 January 1997, Clark et al. 3749 ( MO, NY, QCNE); ( San José de Cayapas ) GoogleMaps , 0°52’N, 78°57’W, 80 m, 2 September 1980, Holm-Nielsen et al. 25680 ( MO, NY, QCA, QNA); ( San José de Cayapas ) GoogleMaps , 0°52’N, 78°57’W, 80 m, 2 September 1980, Holm-Nielsen et al. 25625 ( CAS, F, MO) GoogleMaps ; Río San Miguel, one hour upstream from San Miguel de Cayapas , 0°43’N, 78°52’W, 220 m, 1 September GoogleMaps

58 Phytotaxa 179 (1) © 2014 Magnolia Press


1980, Holm-Nielsen et al. 25501 (MO, QCA, QNA); (San José de Cayapas), 0°52’N, 78°57’W, 80 m, 2 September 1980, Holm-Nielsen et al. 25640 (QCA, QNA, US); (Quinindé), Bilsa Biological Station, Montañas de Mache, 35 km Wof Quinindé, 5 km Wof Santa Isabel, Dogola Trails, 0°21’N, 79°44’W, 400–600 m, 6 December 1994, Baas & Pitman 284 (QCNE, US). Guayas: Río Daule below Pichincha, Hacienda Santa Barbarita, 18 April 1959, Harling 4733 (MO). Los Ríos: Río Palenque B.R., Km, 56 Rd, Quevedo-Sto Domingo, 150–220 m, 24 November 1979, Schupp 60 (F); Río Palenque B.R., Sendero 3 and 4, 0°35’37"S, 79°21’44"W, 215 m, 5 February 2009, Stern & Tepe 359 (NY); Río Palenque B.R., Halfway between Quevedo and Santo Domingo, 200 m, 4 October 1976, Gentry & Dodson 17975 (MO); Río Palenque B.R., Halfway between Quevado and Santo Domingo de los Colorados, 200 m, 13 February 1974, Gentry 9906 (MO, US); Río Palenque B.R., Km 56 Quevedo to Sto, Domingo, 220 m, 11 December 1971, Dodson & McMahon 4253 (MO); (Santo Domingo), Río Palenque B.R., km 56 Quevedo-Santo Domingo, 150–220 m, 5 September 1972, Dodson & McMahon 5098 ( US). Manabí: Chone- Santo Domingo road, near Río La Morena ca. 15 km NNE of Flavio Alfaro , 100 m, 7 May 1980, Harling & Andersson 18906 (F, US); (Flavio Alfaro ), Road Sto Domingo-Chone, 100 m, 11 May 1968, Harling et al. 9431 (F, MO, US). Pichincha: Road La Unión del Toachi-San Francisco de las Pampas, km 3., 1100–1200 m, 19 March 1985, Harling & Andersson 23133 (NY, US); Right side of Río Toachi opposite Alluriquin, 800–900 m, 20 March 1985, Harling & Andersson 23175 (CAS); On ridge c, 10 km Eof Patricia Pilar, 0.3°S, 79.16°W, 300 m, 20 July 1978, Webster et al. 22771 ( US); Virgin forest along Río Toachi near santo Domingo, 700 m, 3 August 1962, Jávita & Epling 334 (NY, US); Carretera Quito-Chiriboga-Empalme, km 92, desvio a Mulaulte, en borde del carretero y en quebrada de Mulaulte, 0°15’S, 78°50’W, 1200–1300 m, 13 December 1987, Zak & Jaramillo 3182 (MO); (Santo Domingo), Centinela, 12 km Eof Patricia Pilar, Along path on ridge line, 600 m, 23 August 1978, Dodson et al. 7216 (MO, US); 31 km from Santo Domingo de los Colorados towards Quito, 925 m, 3 December 1970, Ellenberg 3117 ( US); Tinalandia, Property of Hotel Tinalandia, 9.6 km Eof Santo Domingo de los Colorados, Sof hwy to Aloag & Quito, above Río Toachi, 0°16’S, 79°7’W, 700 m, 3 April 1983, Croat 55692 (MO); ca. 10 km from Santo Domingo de los Colorados, property of Tinlandia, 10 May 1980, Sobel & Strudwick 2334 (CAS, NY).

Illustration:— None found.

Common names and documented uses:— None recorded.

Habitat, distribution and ecology:— Uncommon to occasional in coastal to montane primary and secondary rain forests, in deep shade and along creeks, along the Pacific Andean slope of Colombia and Ecuador ( Fig. 12), at 50–1300 m.

Phenology:— Collected in flower from December through April, and from August through October; in fruit from November through May, and from July through September.

Etymology:— The specific epithet refers to the dark purple color present throughout this species (indumentum, hypanthium, leaves abaxially, and berries).

Discussion:— Miconia atropurpurea , although distinct, is often difficult to distinguish from its close relatives. This is reflected in the fact that most of the specimens of this species have been determined as Clidemia cf. or aff. purpurea , or confused with M. quinquenervia or M. reitziana . The latter species has distinctive leaf bases decurrent on the petiole. Although M. atropurpurea is sister to M. neocoronata on the basis of molecular data, M. atropurpurea and M. reitziana are convergent in their dense vegetative pubescence of pink-red smooth trichomes that are present on both foliar surfaces and hypanthia, and in their inflorescence architecture (groups of modified dichasia). The material from Colombia is the most difficult to interpret, where the two species ( M. atropurpurea and M. reitziana ) co-occur in the department of Chocó, and are very similar vegetatively (variation in leaf shape and slight to moderate anisophylly), as well as in hypanthium and calyx color at anthesis and maturity (red or pink). However M. atropurpurea has a slightly wider hypanthium at the torus level (1.5–1.7 mm vs. 1–1.2 mm), which is suburceolate to campanulate (vs. subcylindric to campanulate). More importantly, M. atropurpurea lacks the characteristic hypanthial resinous-glandular vestiture present in M. reitziana . In the former it consists of rustyasperous and elongate trichomes. It also lacks the densely to sparsely ciliate torus (vs. sessile-glandular to glabrous). On the other hand, the elongate smooth trichomes in M. atropurpurea seem to be very variable in quantity and location as noted by Wurdack (1980).

We agree with Wurdack (1980) who considered Clidemia cyanocarpa and C. haughtii to be conspecific with M. atropurpurea . However, indumentum details (especially of the hypanthia and torus) of these two named species will need to be examined when better topotypical material becomes available for study.


Phytotaxa 179 (1) © 2014 Magnolia Press 59

Conservation status:— Endangered EN B2ab(iii). In Colombia it is protected in Farallones National Park (Valle). In Ecuador it is protected in the Río Palenque Private Reserve (Los Ríos), in the Mache-Chindul Ecological Reserve (Esmeraldas), and may also be in the Cotacachi-Cayapas Ecological Reserve. Considered Vulnerable is previous assessments due to a geographical range that is apparently smaller than 20000 km ² (but AOO ≤ 500 km 2 from this study) and to massive alteration of its habitat over the last 50 years. Apart from habitat destruction, no specific threats are known ( Cotton & Pitman 2004).


Universidad Nacional de Colombia


Missouri Botanical Garden


University of Stellenbosch


William and Lynda Steere Herbarium of the New York Botanical Garden


California Academy of Sciences


Museo Ecuatoriano de Ciencias Naturales


Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador














Miconia atropurpurea Gamba & Almeda

Gamba, Diana & Almeda, Frank 2014

Clidemia haughtii

Wurdack, J. J. 1960: )

Clidemia cyanocarpa

Bentham, G. 1844: )