Derrick

Solanaceae myrmecophytes

3 posts in this topic

I post these in the hope that interest can be created in the Americas to induce more inputs..

 

Solanaceae (Potato Family.) Tribe Juanulloeae.

The tribe Juanulloeae consisted of nine genera of rarely collected, epiphytic shrubs and small trees: Juanulloa, Markea, Schultesianthus, Trianaea, Dyssochroma, Hawkesiophyton, Rahowardiana, Ectozoma, and Merinthopodium.  A cladistic study of the relationships of these species has reduced the number of genera to six, Dyssochroma, Juanulloa, Markea, Merinthopodium, Schultesianthus, and Trianaea. Also included is the genus Solandra, which was treated as a separate tribe, Solandreae. (Knapp et al. 1997.)

Juanulloa and Markea (now including the former Ectozoma and Hawkesiophyton) are probably the only genera of interest herein.  They are Mexican to tropical South American members of the potato family but I can find little information about what seems to be a poorly studied group of plants; however, a number of species are recorded as ant-garden inhabitants and some have hollow stems regularly occupied by ants thus are ant-house species.  (McBride, J. Flora of Peru 1849.) (Benzing 1990.) (Knapp 1997.)

Markea, Louis Claude Marie Richard published in Actes de la Société d'Histoire Naturelle de Paris 1, 1792.  Type Markea coccinea Richard.

These are sparsely branched epiphytes that often grow in ant gardens,  Some species have short to greatly elongate swollen stems that are hollow between internodes where they often shelter ant colonies, consequently these are ant-house species.

Markea camponoti Walter Adolpho Ducke published in Archivos do Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro 1, 1915.  A species regularly associated with Camponotus femoratus ants.  Range: Brazil.

Markea formicarum Carl Lebrecht Udo Dammer published in Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie 37, 1905.

This species is tuberiferous and myrmecophilous, being regularly associated with Azteca sp ants.  Orivel & Leroy (2011) list it as a true ant-garden epiphyte.

Range: Amazonian South America (Venezuela, Colombia, Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru (Type collected in the Loreto Department, Mishuyacu (exact location unknown) but near Iquitos Town.

Markea fosbergii Armando Theodoro Hunziker published in Kurtziana 25, 1997.  Range: Ecuador, (Zamora-Chinchipe Province.)

Markea longiflora John Miers published in Annals and Magazine of Natural History, ser. 2 4, 1849. Range: Venezuela, Guyana, French Guiana, Brazil, and Ecuador.

Markea panamense Paul Carpenter Standley published in Journal of the Arnold Arboretum 11(2), 1930.  Synonym Hawkesiophyton panamense (Standley) Armando Theodoro Hunziker published in Kurtziana 10, 1977.  The swollen tuber-like stems and roots of this species are large, hollow and are probably used by ants for nests and storage.  Range: Panama.

Markea sessiliflora Walter Adolpho Ducke published in, Archivos do Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro 1, 1915.  Range: French Guiana,

Markea spruceana Armando Theodoro Hunziker published in Kurtziana 25, 1997. Endemic to Ecuador (Bolivar & Pichincha Provinces.)

Markea ulei (Dammer) José Cuatrecasas published in Feddes Repertorium Specierum Novarum Regni Vegetabilis 61(1), 1958.  Basionym Ectozoma ulei Carl Lebrecht Udo Dammer published in Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie 37(2), 1905.  Orivel & Leroy (2011) list Markea ulei as a true ant-garden epiphyte.  Range: Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks a lot for these informations!

 

We grow Markea coccinea in our artificial ant garden, and we have also a Juanulloa sp. from Mexico, but I don't know this genus as a myrmecophyt... Really precious information!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One hopes there may be more information in Spanish or Portugese publications but although the Facebook Ant-plant group has a number of multilingual members, I doubt very much if any of them did any searching of their 'local' sources. Certainly nothing was ever posted.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now