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Hechtia lundelliorum, another spectacular and little known bromeliad from Mexico.

Hechtia may be considered practically a Mexican genus. It has 56 species (Espejo et al., 2005; Luther, 2006; Espejo et al., 2007; Espejo et al., 2008; Lopez-Ferrari et al., 2008, 2009; Ramirez-Morillo, 2008), of which 53 occur in Mexico, and 51 of these are endemic.. As we stated in a previous paper (Lopez-Ferrari et al., 2008), Hechtia species are incompletely collected, and hence poorly understood. As a result of our explorations seeking Hechtia species to complete the monograph of Mexican Bromeliaceae, we found this spectacular species in bloom. Hechtia lundelliorum was never collected in flower until recently, when we collected it. The species was known only from a fruiting type collection and a few other fragmentary collections.

[FIGURE 1 OMITTED]

We collected and photographed flowering material of Hechtia lundelliorum (fig1.) and we include the most comprehensive description of this taxon to date.

Hechtia lundelliorum L.B. Sm., in Britton, N. Amer. fl. 19: 97-98. 1938. Type: San Luis Potosi, Tamazunchale, on limestone cliffs and ledges, 225 m, VII-1937 (Female, fruit), C. Lundell & A. Lundell 7265 (HT: MICH!).

[FIGURE 2 OMITTED]

Plant saxicolous, rosulate herb, forming large colonies, flowering 0.80-1.8 m tall, the rosettes zygomorphic in mature plants, 30--90 cm long. Leaves numerous, fleshy, very long and pendent; sheaths white to yellowish, broadly oblong to oblong, 5-6 x 3--5 cm, minute serrated especially toward the apical portion, white-lepidote on both surfaces; blades pendent in mature plants, light green at the adaxial surface, densely white-lepidote on the abaxial surface, linear to narrowly triangular, long attenuated, 60-110 x 1-2 cm, minute serrated at the margin. Inflorescence terminal, paniculate, erect to arched and/or pendulous, three divided; male inflorescence 50-180 cm high, three times branched, peduncle brown, erect, cylindric, 50-80 cm long, 8-12 mm diameter; peduncle bracts light brown linear to long triangular, 25-50 cm long. ca. 1 cm width at the base, entere to minute denticulated at the margisn, densely lepidote on the abaxial surface, glabrous to glabrescente on the adaxial surface,long attenuated much longer than the internodes, but never covering it; reducing their longitude gradually to the apical portion of the peduncle, primary branches numerous, ascendent, 25-40 cm long, ca. 4 cm width, pediculated, the pedicles flattened, 4-10 cm long, ca. 4 mm width; primary bracts light brown, linear to triangular, 2-25 cm long, 4-6 mm width at the base, long attenuate to acuminate; secondary branches numerous, ascendent to adpressed, 6-13 cm long, pediculated, the pedicles 1-2 cm long; secondary bracts triangular, ca. 2 mm long, ca. 1 mm width, deciduous; terciary branches numerous; flowers numerous per branch, polystichous, rotate to slightly campanulate, ca. 6 mm diameter, short pedicellate, the pedicels filiform, 1.5-2.5 mm long; floral bracts light brown, triangular, ca. 2 mm long, ca. 2.5 mm wide, rounded; sepals brown to light brown with white, slightlr rose to the margins, ovate to triangular, ca. 1.2 x 1.4 mm, with a conspicuous central nerve, glabrous, entere, roundes; petals white, elliptic, nerved, 3.5-4.2 x 2.1-2.4 mm, rounded; stamens subequal, shorter than the petals, filaments white, laminar, linear-triangular, 2-3 mm long, anthers yellow, oblong, dorsifixed, ca. 1.4 mm long; ovary vestigial, white, ovoid, ca. 1 mm long, ca. 1 mm in diameter. Female inflorescence 1-1.5 m high, the peduncle dark brown, cylindric, 50-75 cm long, 1.5-2 cm diameter at the base, glabrous; peduncle bracts brown to light brown or green, foliaceous, linear to long triangular, 5-70 cm long, ca. 1 cm wide ate the base, minute serrated at the margins, densely white lepidote on the abaxial surface, glabrous to glabrescente on the adaxila surface, long attenuated, much longer than the internodes, but never covering the peduncle, reducing their longitude gradually to the apex of the peducnle; primary branches numerous, ascendent , 25-35 cm long, pediculate, the pedicles flattened, 7-12 cm long, ca. 2.5 mm wide; primary bracts brown to light brown, linear to triangular, 3-12 cm long, 4.5-5 mm wide at the base, long attenuated to acuminate; secondary branches numerous, ascendent to adpressed, 14-17 cm long, pediculated, the pedicles ca. 2 cm long; secondary bracts triangular, ca. 2 mm long, ca. 1 mm wide, deciduous; tertiary branches numerous; flowers numerous per branch, polystichous, rotate to slightly campanulate, ca. 8 mm diameter, short pedicellate, the pedicels 1.4-1.7 mm long; floral bracts light brown, hyaline, ovate to triangular, ca. 1 mm long, ca. 1 mm wide, rounded; sepals light brown with withe, ovate to triangular, ca. 1.5 mm long, ca. 1 mm wide, acute; petals white, oblong-elliptic, ca. 3.5 mm long, ca.1.7 mm wide, rounded; ovary green, ovoid, ca. 3 mm long, ca. 2 mm in diameter, glabrous, stigma branches three, white, linear, 1-2 mm long, recurved; staminodes white, laminar, triangular, ca. 1 mm long, antheroids white, diminute, inconspicuous; capsule brown to dark brown ovoid to narrowly ovoid, slightly trigonous, 5-7 mm long, 2-3 mm in diameter, glabrous, reflexed; seeds brown to reddish-brown, fusiform, ca. 1.3 mm long, vca. 0.5 mm in diameter, with a wing that encircle the half of the seed and prolongues in two terminale caudes.

[FIGURE 3 OMITTED]

Specimens examined: E. Carranza G. 4616 (IEBx2, UAMIZx2 male); J. Ceja, A. Espejo, A. R. Lopez-Ferrari & A. Mendoza R. 1074 (IEBx2, UAMIZx3 female); R. Ehlers et al. EM982402 (WUx2 female); A. Espejo, A. R. Lopez-Ferrari, J. Ceja, A. Mendoza R. & R. Valdes A. 6964 (UAMIZx8 female); A. Espejo, A. R. Lopez-Ferrari, J. Ceja, A. Mendoza R. & R. Valdes A. 6965 (UAMIZx8 male); Kenoyer & Crum 3940 (AAx2 female); A. R. Lopez-Ferrari & A. Espejo 2001 (UAMIZx3 female); C. L. Lundell & A. A. Lundell 7265 (MICHx2 female); M. Martinez D. 1684 (MEXU, TEX female); M. Martinez D. 1685 (IEB, MEXU male); E. Perez C. et al. 4111 (IEB, UAMIZ female); J. Rzedowski 43305 (IEBx2 male); J. Rzedowski 46333 (CIIDIRX2, ENCBx2, MEXUx2 female); J. Rzedowski 46334 (ENCB, FCME, MEXU, TEX, UAMIZ male); P. Tenorio L. 15730 (IEB, MEXU); S. Zamudio R. 6283 (CIIDIR, ENCB, MEXU, UA MIZ female); S. Zamudio R. 6284 (ENCB, MEXU, TEX, USx2 male); S. Zamudio R. 6329 (UAMIZ male); S. Zamudio R. & E. Carranza G. 6470 (IZTA, MEXU, TEXx2, UAMIZx2 female).

Hechtia lundelliorum is a cliff-dwelling species that inhabits high steep faces of limestone rocks in the canyons of the Moctuzema river basin, where it forms extensive colonies (figs. 1-3). The species is known from the states of Hidalgo, Queretaro, and San Luis Potosi in Mexico, growing between 225 and 1250 m elevation. The species is spectacular and showy both vegetatively as well as in flower. The size of the inflorescence, besides the abundance, color, and delicate scent of the flowers (figures 2, 3), makes it a plant with great ornamental potential. Fortunately, the plants of the species grows at inaccessible places and are, in that way, protected from predation and disturbance.

Acknowledgments

We are very grateful to Victor Steinmann for the critical revision of the manuscript and for the improvement of the final english version. Also we thank the curators of AA, CIIDIR, ENCB, FCME, IEB, IZTA, MICH, TEX, UAMIZ, US, and WU for alowing us the use of their herbaria. The photos included were taken by Aniceto Mendoza and Adolfo Espejo.

References

Espejo-Serna, A. (2008). "Dos Nuevas Especies de Hechtia (Bromeliaceae) del centro de Mexico." Acta Bot Mexicana 83: 49-61.

Espejo-Serna, A., A. R. Lopez-Ferrari, et al. (2004). "Checklist of Mexican Bromeliaceae with notes on species distribution by state and municipality, and levels of endemism." Selbyana 25: 33-86.

Espejo-Serna, A., I. Lopez-Ferrari, et al. (2007). "Dos Nuevas Especies de Hechtia (Bromeliaceae) de Mexico." Acta Bot. Mexicana 78: 97-109.

Lopez-Ferrari, A. R., A. Espejo-Serna, et al. (2008). "Hechtia matudae, a Spectacular, Though Neglected Bromeliad from Mexico." J. Bromeliad Soc. 58(1): 56-60, front cover

Lopez-Ferrari, A. R., A. Espejo-Serna, et al. (2009). "Hechtia caulescens (Bromeliaceae), a New Species from Central Mexico." Novon 19: 197-200.

Luther, H. (2006). An alphabetical list of bromeliad binomials 10th edition. Sarasota, FL, Bromeliad Society International.

Ramirez-Morillo, I. M. (2008). "A new Hechtia (Bromeliaceae) from the states of Queretaro and Hidalgo, Mexico." Acta Bot Mexicana 85: 63-74.

Smith, L. B. and R. J. Downs (1974). Flora Neotropica Monograph No. 14 (Pitcairnioideae) (Bromeliaceae). New York, Hafner Press.

Ana Rosa Lopez-Ferrari (1), Adolfo Espejo-Serna, Jacqueline Ceja-Romero & Aniceto Mendoza-Ruiz (1)

(1) All Authors: Departamento de Biologia, Division de Ciencias Biologicas y de la Salud, Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa C. P. 09340 Mexico, D. F., e-mail: aes@xanum.uam.mx
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Title Annotation:Scientific
Author:Lopez-Ferrari, Ana Rosa; Espejo-Serna, Adolfo; Ceja-Romero, Jacqueline; Mendoza-Ruiz, Aniceto
Publication:Journal of the Bromeliad Society
Geographic Code:1MEX
Date:Sep 1, 2010
Words:1410
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