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This plant was given to me some years ago as Hydnophytum philippinense

It does not flower too often and so far I missed the opportunity to dissect a flower in order to confirm the naming.

However, new flowers are on the way and I think this time I will have a look.







Becc. Malesia 2: 154-155 1884







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Here is the translation of Beccai's original description from the first post in this thread:

Odoardo Beccari, in Malesia II, 1884;       HOSPITALITY PLANTS;     pages 149, 150

16. HYDNOPHYTUM PHILIPPINENSE species nova, Latin description: " — Tuber .... — Stems several, succulent, jointed, nodose, cylindrical internodes somewhat compressed at the ends. — Leaves fleshy, ovate or ovate-elliptical or subobovate, blunt, base gradually tapering to a thick very short petiole, nearly without veins, margin sharp, scarcely revolute. — Inflorescences contracted tubercles barely prominent. — Flowers clustered, sessile. — Calyx cupular, smooth, undivided margin, truncated, not ciliated. — Corolla in the bud is clavate, tapered, deeply 4-lobed, lobes elongated-ovate, with a very short incurved apicule; the base is barbate between the stamens; fauces are barbate up to the upper part of the tube. — Stamens nearly without filaments, anthers elongated, loculi are parallel, blunt. — Style filiform, 2 linear stigmas, in the well developed bud reaching half the length of the anthers. — Fruit dry, subobovate-elliptical, rapidly narrowing to the neck, crowned by the short calyx limb, disc prominent, somewhat tumid. — Pyrenes are obovate, narrowing at the apex into a spiny mucro, tapering at the base, blunt, flat ventrally and convex dorsally. (Table XXXIII, figs. 14-19)."

Description. — The tuber is missing. — Succulent stems, articulated, nodose, with cylindrical internodes slightly flattened in the younger parts. Fleshy leaves, ovate, ovate-elliptical or nearly ovate, often narrower at the apex but blunt, narrower at the base with a short, wide petiole, nearly veinless with only 2 or 3 veins inserted at an acute angle that at times can barely be discerned within the thick parenchyma; in the dry leaf, the margin is sharp and slightly rolled downward. The flowers are sessile, clustered in pulvinuli. The calyx is cupolar and hairless, the margin is entire, truncated and not ciliated. The bud is clavate, narrowing toward the apex, with an elongated tube about 7 mm long, and elongated-ovate lobes whose length is nearly half that of the corolla, blunt at the apex, thick and with a small incurved apicule, bearded at the base above the fauces between the stamens. The hairs extend even underneath the stamens and fauces, at the upper part of the tube. The stamens have very short filaments and anthers nearly fixed at the base, elongated, rounded at the two extremities. The style is filiform, with two linear stigmas longer than the stamens; at least that is how I saw them in a bud nearly ready to open. The fruits (not fully mature) are obovate, abruptly narrowing at the apex to a relatively long neck, crowned by the short remains of the calyx among which the disk rises slightly. The pyrenes are obovate, somewhat rough at the apex, narrower at the base but blunt, convex on the dorsal surface and flat on the ventral surface (*)

Habitat. — On the Island of Malanipa near Zamboanga, in the southernmost part of the Philippines, gathered by Moseley during the “Challenger” expedition in January-February of 1875 (Kew Herbarium).

Observations. — So far, this is the only species of Hydnophytum found in the Philippines. This is remarkable due to the very strong similarities with Hydnophytum crassifolium of the Aru Islands, of which it could be a local variety. It is true that the specimens examined are very imperfect, and I was able to examine only a single flower, albeit very well developed, and one fruit. The differences with the typical H. crassifolium are found in the stigmas, which in H. Philippinense reach halfway up to the anthers while in H. crassifolium they extend well beyond; the pyrenes are more nearly oval, with a shorter and wider mucro; the leaves are narrower at the base; the flowers are smaller, the incurved apicule of the corolla lobes is less developed. I was not able to determine the presence of heterostylia.

(*) In general, the Hydnophytum fruit which have a long neck when near maturity (at least in the dry fruit), have mucronate pyrenes, because the point of the pyrene penetrates the neck of the fruit.

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