A. N. Batista & Bianchetti
Novon vol 16/17:22, 2006.
TYPE: Brazil. Minas Gerais: flowered in cultivation
in Brasília from Sep. to early Oct. 2003,
J.A.N. Batista & L.B. Bianchetti 1306 (holotype,
CEN; isotypes: K, MO, SP). Figures 1-9.
macedoi partibus vegetativis C. caiapoensi L.C.
Menezes simile, morphologia florali C. poecilo Reichenbach.f.
& Warming simile et florum colore C. pallido
Reichenbach.f. & Warming simile, sed a his et
ab omnibus speciebus generis basi labelli et parte
intra lobos laterales fortiter deflexa, fere parallele
ad basim lobi centralis disposita et calo erecto,
integro, paulo vel non verrucoso, omnino disposito
in basi lobi centralis labeli differt.
Terrestrial herb; pseudobulbs completely buried
to partially exposed, small, oblong, apex acute,
leafless from the second year onward, externally
whitened, 6-11 x 0.8-2.3 cm; roots numerous, 3.5-4
mm wide, glabrous. Leaves at flowering 6 to 9, partially
to well developed, (13)20-41 x (0.5)0.7-1(1.4) cm,
base with 4 or 5 sheaths, when fully developed 9
to 12, erect, coriaceous, linear to linear-lanceolate,
the more developed 37-68 x 1-1.9 cm, articulate,
the articulation 2.5-4 cm from the apex of the pseudobulb,
apex acuminate. Inflorescence lateral, erect, simple
to branched, 24-37 cm long, ca. 0.5 cm diameter,
green; peduncle 11-22 cm, with 2 sheath-like bracts,
adpressed, 1.7-3.6 x 1-1.3 cm, straw colored; rachis
12-14 cm long; lateral branches none to 2, short,
4-5.5 cm long; floral bracts well developed, broadly
lanceolate, deflexed, ca. same size or little longer
than the pedicellate ovary, 19-28 x 9-12 mm, apex
acute, margins slightly undulate, green with brownish-purple
spots; ovary with pedicel 16-23 mm long, perpendicular
to the rachis, green to greenish-brown. Flowers
ca. 15, slightly sweet-scented; sepals and petals
outspread, concave, margins smooth, toward the apex
undulate, apex minutely apiculate, green with brown
or brownish-purple spots; sepals broadly lanceolate
to broadly elliptical; dorsal sepal 14-27 x 9-11.5
mm; lateral sepals slightly oblique, 14-26 x 9-11
mm; petals obovate to almost orbicular, base cuneate,
apex obtuse to rotundate, 10-19 x 9-10 mm; lip 3-lobed,
9.5-12 mm long, when spread 14-19 mm wide between
the apex of the side lobes; base shortly unguiculate,
ca. 2 mm long, white; base and region between the
lateral lobes strongly deflexed, almost parallel
to the central lobe base; lateral lobes erect, inner
surface bent ca. 45o frontward toward the apex,
obovate-oblong falcate to linear falcate, 6-8 x
2.5-5 mm, apex rounded, base slightly to evidently
constricted, margins entire, smooth, pinkish; callus
entire, little to no verrucosities, then smooth,
protruding, erect, completely placed at the base
of the midlobe, not expanded between the lateral
lobes, upper surface slightly sulcate, whitened;
isthmus separating the lateral lobes from the midlobe
evident; midlobe with a 1-3 mm long base, somewhat
reniform to transversely elliptic, 6-8 x 9-12 mm,
base constricted, apex retuse when flattened, lateral
margins revolute, smooth, whitened with a few pink
dots at the center and a broad pinkish strip at
the margin; column erect, arcuate, trigonous, 6-8
mm long, 3.5-4 mm wide at apex, apiculate, base
whitened, at middle white-lilac and toward the apex
green to greenish-purple; column foot 4-5 mm long;
anther 2.5-3 x 1.5-1.8 mm, yellow, apex green; pollinia
two, waxy, sulcate, each ca. 1 mm long and 0.9 mm
wide, yellow; stipe triangular, hyaline, ca. 1.3
mm wide at base. Fruit not examined.
The new species is named in honor of Amaro
Macedo who first collected the species in 1951 and
whose intensive collecting in the Triângulo
Mineiro region has contributed greatly to our knowledge
of the flora of this region.
Distribution. Cyrtopodium macedoi is so far known
only from two sites in the Triângulo Mineiro
region in the western part of the state of Minas
Gerais in southeastern Brazil. Little is left of
the original native vegetation in the area. However,
because of the existence of other regions with a
similar vegetation and climate in the cerrado biome
of central Brazil, this species should also be expected
at other localities, most probably in the cerrado
core region. According to the current knowledge
of the species and using the World Conservation
Union Red List Categories and Criteria (IUCN, 2001),
C. macedoi can tentatively be classified as endangered.
Habitat, Ecology and Phenology. Cyrtopodium
macedoi appears to be typical of dry habitats
and was found growing in dry campo limpo (grassy
field) and campo sujo (dry grass-herb-sub shrub
field) vegetation. Plants were found growing on
deep clay latosols as well as shallow, rocky soil
on hill sides. In the former case, the plants were
vegetatively more developed and had pseudobulbs
that were completely buried (Fig. 2). Cyrtopodium
poecilum Rchb.f. & Warm., C. cristatum
Lindl., C. brandonianum Barb. Rodr. and C.
caiapoense L.C. Menezes are sympatric species found
in similar habitats. Like most Cyrtopodium
species in central Brazil, C. macedoi flowers during
the beginning of the rainy season in October, but
probably also extends into late September and early
November. As with other terrestrial species of the
genus, flowering in C. macedoi is greatly enhanced
by fire (Oliveira et al. 1996). In 2002 and 2003,
not a single flowering plant was found during field
excursions to the two sites where the species is
known to occur. However, plants collected from the
same sites in 2002 and kept under cultivation flowered
profusely when submitted to a controlled fire in
2003 (five out of seven plants flowered after they
were burned). In the label from the collection Macedo
3385, there is no mention of fire, but the ends
of the leaves are dry and partially missing, suggesting
that they may have been affected by fire at an early
stage of development.
Cyrtopodium macedoi was first collected by
Amaro Macedo in 1951, and it was through this single
collection that we became aware of this species’
existence. The first excursion to the original site
of collection revealed several plants, but none
in flower. Only after some specimens kept under
cultivation at Embrapa Recursos Genéticos
e Biotecnologia in Brasília had flowered
and after a detailed examination of the fresh flowers
was it possible to positively recognize this taxon
as a new species. The collection made by Amaro Macedo
(Macedo 3385) was examined by the late orchidologist
F.C. Hoehne, who mistakenly identified the species
as C. vernuum Rchb.f. & Warm. Marcela
I. Sánchez, who examined a duplicate of the
Amaro Macedo collection located at the United States
National Herbarium (US), identified it as C. vernuum
var. ligulatum. However, as far as we could determine,
this variety was never published. Furthermore, C.
macedoi is certainly not a variety of C. vernuum
and according to the International Code of Botanical
Nomenclature (Greuter et al. 2000) in no case does
a name have priority outside the rank in which it
was published (art. 11.2).
A very distinctive character of C. macedoi,
not found in any other species in the genus, is
the base and the part between the lateral lobes
of the corolla lip, which is strongly deflexed and
almost parallel to the lip midlobe (Fig. 7). Also,
the callus of C. macedoi is uncommon in the
genus since it shows little or no verrucosities,
is protruding and is completely placed at the base
of the lip midlobe (Figs. 7 and 8), whereas in most
other species it is usually strongly verrucose,
spread between the lateral lobes and frequently
reaches the claw.
Compared to other species in the genus, C. macedoi
is similar to and can be easily confused in vegetative
characters to C. caiapoense L.C. Menezes.
However, Cyrtopodium caiapoense has brownish
sepals and petals with strongly undulated margins,
a shorter and less evident isthmus separating the
lip lateral lobes from the midlobe, and non-falcate
lateral lobes of the corolla lip. In flower morphology
and color, C. macedoi is similar to C.
poecilum Rchb.f. & Warm., particularly to
C. poecilum var. roseum J.A.N. Batista
& Bianchetti, that has a pink lip. However,
C. poecilum has externally reddish-purple pseudobulbs
(compare with fig. 3), fewer [5 or 6(7)] and broader
(0.8-5.5 cm) leaves, parallel lateral lobes of the
lip, a larger callus that is deeply sulcate and
extends until the base of the lip (compare with
figs. 4-6). Cyrtopodium macedoi is also similar
in the morphology and color of the flowers to C.
fowliei L.C. Menezes, but the latter species
is from seasonally humid places, from southeastern
Brazil to Venezuela, has smaller pseudobulbs (3-5
x 1-2.5 cm) that are externally reddish-purple,
fewer (4-6) leaves, and shorter [4-5(6) x (4)5-6(7)
mm], parallel and non-falcate lateral lobes of the
lip. In the general color of the flowers, C.
macedoi is similar to C. pallidum Rchb.f.
& Warm., but the latter species is typically
from dark, sandy-clay soil found in wetter areas,
has smaller pseudobulbs (2.5-3.5 X 0.8-1 cm), fewer
(4-6) leaves, an invariably simple inflorescence
and smaller flowers (sepals (8)10-11(13) X 6-8(11)
mm). Finally, C. vernuum , with which C.
macedoi was previously confused, has larger
(7-18 x 1.5-4 cm) and typically exposed pseudobulbs,
a more branched inflorescence with (0)2-3(4) lateral
branches (5)8.5-20(22) cm long, flowers that are
yellow with red dots at the margins of the petals
and sepals, and oblong, non-falcate lateral lobes
of the lip.
In older flowers of C. macedoi, the column
bends down or the lip moves up so that the pollinarium
at the column apex touches and rests over the callus,
fitting exactly into the depression in the center
of the callus (Fig. 9). In 24 years of collecting
and examining hundreds of living specimens and flowers
of several species, we have not seen anything similar
to this arrangement in any other species of the
genus. The significance of this organization is
BRAZIL. Minas Gerais: A. Macedo 3385 (SP, US); J.A.N.
Batista, K.F. Pellizzaro, M.C.D. Macedo & J.B.
Santos 1441 (CEN, K, MO, SP).
The authors thank Amaro Macedo and his daughter,
Maria do Carmo D. Macedo, for logistical support
and for their assistance during our excursions to
the Triângulo Mineiro region. We also thank
the curator of SP for loans, Simone C. Souza e Silva
for preparing the illustration, Tarciso Filgueiras
for the Latin diagnoses, Stephen Hyslop for reviewing
the English, Victoria Hollowell and three anonymous
reviewers for improvements in the manuscript.
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