Ocotea cryptocaryoides Kosterm.

Werff, Henk Van Der, 2013, A revision of the genus Ocotea Aubl. (Lauraceae) in Madagascar and the Comoro Islands, Adansonia (3) 35 (2), pp. 235-279: 246-247

publication ID

http://doi.org/ 10.5252/a2013n2a5

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scientific name

Ocotea cryptocaryoides Kosterm.


7. Ocotea cryptocaryoides Kosterm.   ( Fig. 3 View FIG )

Communication (Pengumuman) of the Forest Research Institute, Indonesia 60: 10 (1957).

TYPUS. — Madagascar. Massif du Beanjada ( N de la presqu’île Masoala), 1100 m, 31.XII.1953, fls, Service Forestier (Capuron) 8839 (holo-, P [ P00541610]!; iso-, K, P [ P00541609, P00541611]!)   .

MATERIAL EXAMINED. — Toamasina, Masoala National Park, N ridge of Ambohitsitondroinan’Mahalevona, Lowry et al. 6207 ( MO, P [ P 01991945]); Massif de Beanjada, Service Forestier (Capuron) 8853 ( MO, P [ P 01991941]); Toamasina, Fiv. Maroantsetra, Comm. Ambinanitelo, Fok. Marovovonana, Antilahimena 2696 ( MO).

DISTRIBUTION. — Ocotea cryptocaryoides   is known from 4 collections just N of the Masoala Peninsula (Massif de Beanjada, Massif de Ambohitsitondroina near Mahalevona) between 800 and 1200 m altitude.

PHENOLOGY. — Flowers and fruits collected in December.


Tree, to 20 m tall.Twigs angular, glabrous; terminal buds glabrous or with a few hairs. Leaves alternate, coriaceous, 7-15 × 6-10 cm, glabrous, base acute, cuneate or obtuse, apex obtuse or acute, lateral veins 5-7, not very prominent, tertiary venation forming a rather fine reticulum, veins raised on both surfaces but more strongly so on the lower surface, domatia lacking, margins slightly inrolled. Petioles glabrous, 1-2 cm long. Inflorescences glabrous or nearly so, in the axils of leaves or in the axils of bracts at the base of young shoots, 5-10 cm long. Flowers conical, tepals more or less erect at anthesis, 4 mm in diameter. Tepals 6, equal, glabrous outside, pubescent inside, 2.5 mm long; stamens 9, 4-celled, 1-1.5 mm long, the slender filaments sparsely pubescent, filaments of the inner stamens with two glands at the base, staminodia present, stipitiform, as long as the filaments of the outer stamens, pistil glabrous, 3 mm long, ovary as long as the style; receptacle deeply cup-shaped, glabrous inside.Cupule almost completely enclosing the fruit; roundish, c. 2 cm in diameter, with six longitudinal ribs or wings on the outside.


Ocotea cryptocaryoides   is best recognized by the glabrous leaves with raised reticulation, glabrous twigs and (nearly) glabrous flowers. Its fruit is almost completely enclosed by the large cupule with six prominent wings or ribs, which is unique in the genus Ocotea   . Size of the fruits strongly suggests that the fruits are mature. On one of the fruits two old stamens were found, and these show convincingly that these remarkable fruits belong to an Ocotea species.   Several recent collections from Marojejy, Anjanaharibe, Ankirindro (NW of Maroantsetra), and the Vohitaly forest (W of Maroantsetra) are vegetatively (coriaceous, alternate leaves with raised reticulation) very similar to O. cryptocaryoides   . They differ in having narrower leaves, slightly smaller flowers and deeply cup-shaped cupules that are not strongly ribbed. One of these collections came from Ambohitsitondroina, where one of the three collections of O. cryptocaryoides   was made. I am reluctant to describe these collections as a new species. Additional good collections may show more differences and thus warrant description of a new species, but for the time being I have annotated these specimens as O. cryptocaryoides   vel aff.


Nanjing University


Museum National d' Histoire Naturelle, Paris (MNHN) - Vascular Plants


Royal Botanic Gardens


Missouri Botanical Garden