SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

Home Pagealphabetic serial listing  

Services on Demand




Related links

  • On index processCited by Google
  • Have no similar articlesSimilars in SciELO
  • On index processSimilars in Google


Revista de la Academia Colombiana de Ciencias Exactas, Físicas y Naturales

Print version ISSN 0370-3908

Rev. acad. colomb. cienc. exact. fis. nat. vol.36 no.139 Bogotá Apr./June 2012




Marisol Amaya Márquez*, James Foley Smith**

* Instituto de Ciencias Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Apartado 7495, Bogotá, Colombia. Email:
** Department of Biological Science, Boise State University, 1910 University Drive, Boise ID 83725, U.S.A. Email:


A new species of Columnea belonging to section Ortholoma (Gesneriaceae) from La Serranía de los Paraguas in the Valle del Cauca Department in Colombia (Cordillera Occidental) is described and illustrated.

Key words: Colombia, Columnea, Flora of Colombia, Gesneriaceae, Ortholoma, Taxonomy, Valle del Cauca.


Se describe e ilustra una nueva especie de Columnea perteneciente a la sección Ortholoma (Gesneriaceae). La nueva especie se descubrió en La Serranía de los Paraguas, en el departamento del Valle del Cauca (Cordillera Occidental) en Colombia.

Palabras clave: Colombia, Columnea, Flora de Colombia, Gesneriaceae, Ortholoma, Taxonomía, Valle del Cauca.

Ortholoma Benth. corresponds to the circumscription of the genus Trichantha Hook. Validated by Wiehler (1973, 1975), and now recognized as a section within the genus Columnea (Kvist & Skog 1993). With nearly 50 species, it is the third largest section after Collandra and Columnea s.s (Smith in prep.). Ongoing molecular phylogenetic analyses of Columnea indicate that it is unlikely that Ortholoma will be resolved as monophyletic (Smith et al. submitted). However, since these analyses are incomplete and clades have not yet been named, we here use the older published sectional name Ortholoma. The species in this section are herbs, usually with anisophyllous leaves at each node. They can be separated in two groups according to the presence or absence of external appendages located between the corolla lobes. The species reported in this paper is unusual in having a vegetative shoot similar to the one exhibited by the species of sect. Collandra, i.e., leaves subsessile disposed in close-set arrangement that give the shoots a "fern-frond" appearance (Wiehler 1983), and flowers that have external appendages between the corolla lobes as it occurs in some species of sect. Ortholoma.

Columnea paraguensis M. Amaya & J. F. Smith sp. nov. Figures 1 & 2A, B

TYPE: COLOMBIA: VALLE DEL CAUCA: Municipio El Cairo, Vereda El Brillante, natural reserve, Cerro El Inglés, 4°45'N, 76°17'W, 2450 m, May 30, 2011, O. H Marín-Gómez & D. A. Gómez-Hoyos 199 (Holotype, COL; Isotype, CUVC).

C. paraguensis differs from C. fuscihirta L. P. Kvist & L. E. Skog in having corollas with four appendages external to and between the lobes, and the larger leaf without red spots on its abaxial side.

Suffrutescent vine, 3 m long; stem subterete, 0.6-0.9 cm diam., the epidermis green, the indument hirsute, of 9-11 celled translucent trichomes; internodes 1-2 cm long. Leaves opposite, strongly anisophyllous papyraceous. Larger leaf petiolate, the petioles 0.4-1 cm long, hirsute with 7-10 celled trichomes; blade asymmetrical, oblanceolate, 15.3-19 x 5-5.5 cm, basally oblique, apically acuminate, marginally irregularly dentate, adaxially green, pilose with 8 celled trichomes, abaxially pale green, pilose with 5-7 celled trichomes, 9-10 veined on the larger side of the blade. Smaller leaf sessile, the blade asymmetrical, lanceolate, 1.3-1.7 x 0.2-0.3 cm, basally oblique, apically long attenuate, marginally dentate, adaxially green, pilose with 9-10 celled trichomes, abaxially pale green, pilose with 9-10 celled trichomes. Inflorescence fasciculate, 2 flowered in the larger leaf axil; bibracteolate, the bracts lanceolate, 1.8-2.4 x 0.2-0.3 cm, pale green, adaxially glandular, abaxially pilose, marginally dentate. Flowers pedicellate, the pedicel 0.5-0.6 cm long, pilose with 10 celled trichomes. Calyx pale green, the sepals free, subequal, lanceolate, 1.2-1.8 x 0.2-0.3 cm, adaxially glandular with short headed trichomes, abaxially pilose with 10 celled trichomes; marginally laciniate. Corolla erect, yellow, the tube straight, slightly constricted at base and throat, curved downwards at the limb; 2.4 cm long, 0.6 cm wide at the middle, 0.3 cm wide at the constricted base, 0.4 cm at the troat; base dorsally gibbous, gibbosity 0.3 x 0.5 cm; limb bilabiate, the lobes patent, the two dorsal oblong, the others acute, 0.7 x 0.3 cm; corolla red outside and pilose at the middle of the tube, translucent at the limb; inside glandular with 2 celled trichomes, along the tube, whereas at the limb glandular only on the two dorsal lobes, with the two lateral and the ventral lobes glabrous. Androecium of 4 stamens, the filaments 2 cm long, pilose with unicellular trichomes, basally connate by 0.5 cm forming a folded and dorsally open staminal blade; anther sagittate, 1.5 x 1.5 mm, the connective subquadrate, 1.3 x 1.3 mm. Gynoecium conoidal, 0.5 x 0.3 cm, pilose with 8-10 celled trichomes; style 1.8 cm long, glandular with uniseriate, 3-celled trichomes and a glandular head; stigma bilobed, recurved. Nectary consisting of 2 dorsal connate glands, 1.5 x 1.5 mm. Fruit a green but apically purple berry, 1.3 x 0.8 cm. Seeds not seen.

Etymology. The species is named after La Serranía de los Paraguas to acknowledge the geographical area where the species was recently collected.

Phenology. Flowers and fruits recorded in May. This information may not reflect the full phenology of the species due to the limited specimens known.

Distribution. Columnea paraguensis is known only from the type locality in the western slopes of the Cordillera Occidental in the Colombian Andes at the limit between the Valle del Cauca and Chocó Departments at 2450 m alt. The Natural Reserve of Cerro El Inglés with 355 hectares is a place with the highest records of endemism and biodiversity recorded for the Serranía de los Paraguas (Silverstone-Sopkin & Ramos-Pérez 1995, Corporación Serraniagua 2006 (ined.). The Serranía de Los Paraguas is an important ecosystem with high relevance for the conservation of the biodiversity in Colombia.

Representative specimens. No additional collections have been seen.

Distinctive features The species is recognized vegetatively by having a translucent indument on the whole plant, although it changes to brownish on the older part of the stem and is red at the middle part of the corolla tube (Figura 2B). The leaves do not have red or purple maculae and instead are homogenously green on the abaxial face. The inflorescences are located at a ventral position, with two flowers per inflorescence, but only one opens at a time (Figura 2B). The corolla tube has four appendages external to and between the lobes, which are typical of some species of sect. Ortholoma (Figura 2B), but are distinct from the corolla appendages reported for some species in sect. Collandra, where five appendages located inside the corolla tube form a corona (Amaya et al. 2004). Although Columnea paraguensis has yet to be sampled in molecular phylogenetic analyses, the Collandra-like leaf arrangement and presence of long coarse hairs on the stem imply a relationship to Columnea ciliata (Wiehler) L. P. Kvist & L. E. Skog/ C. illepida Moore clade (Smith in prep.).


Columnea paraguensis is also closely morphologically similar to C. fuscihirta (Fig. 2C). Both species are suffrutescent climbers, have a larger leaf that is asymmetrical and oblanceolate of similar size to the leaves of C. fuscihirta, with the base oblique, the apex acuminate and the margin irregularly dentate; pedicel short; calyx pale green or green-yellow with margin laciniate; corolla cylindrical, yellow; four stamens with filaments pilose, and stigma bilabiate and recurvated at maturity. On the other hand, the main difference between the two species is the presence of the four external corolla appendages in C. paraguensis which are absent in C. fuscihirta. More characters that help to distinguish between these species are presented in Table 1.



MAM wishes to express her appreciation to the National University of Colombia for the opportunity to carry out the research leading to the identification of the new species. The authors are indebted to Oscar Humberto Marín for collecting the plant and for permission to publish the pictures of C. paraguensis and C. fuscihirta; to Juan Carlos Pinzón for the elaboration of the drawing, to Diego Giraldo-Cañas and two anonymous evaluators for making valuable observations to the manuscript. JFS acknowledges support from US National Science Foundation (grant DEB0949270).

Literature cited

Amaya, M.; L. E. Skog & L. P. Kvist. 2004. Novae Gesneriaceae Neotropicarium XII: Four new species of Columnea (Gesneriaceae) section Collandra from Colombia. Edinburgh Journal of Botany 60 (3): 415- 424.         [ Links ]

Corporación Serraniagua. 2006. Development and Implementation of Private Nature Reserves in Serrania de los Paraguas. Final Report. January 2006. 14 p.         [ Links ]

Kvist, L. P. & L. E. Skog. 1993. The genus Columnea (Gesneriaceae) in Ecuador. Allertonia 6 (5): 327-400.         [ Links ]

Silverstone-Sopkin P. A. & J. E. Ramos-Pérez 1995. Floristic Exploration and Phytogeography of the Cerro del Torrá, Chocó, Colombia. In: Biodiversity and Conservation of Neotropical Montane Forest. Churchill, S. P, H. Balsleve, E. Forero & J. L. Luteyn. (Eds.) The New York Botanical Garden. New York. 169-186 pp.         [ Links ]

Wiehler, H. 1973. One hundred transfers from Alloplectus and Columnea. Phytologia 27 (5): 309-329.         [ Links ]

_________. 1975. Name changes in Neotropical Gesneriaceae. Selbyana 1: 32-35.         [ Links ]

_________. 1983. A synopsis of the Neotropical Gesneriaceae. Selbyana 6: 1-219.         [ Links ]

Recibido: 1 de febrero de 2012

Aceptado para publicación: 22 de mayo de 2012