Asterogyne H.Wendl. ex Hook.f., Gen. Pl. 3: 914 (1883)

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Number of Taxa

  • 5 species

Discussion

Biology And Ecology

Common Name

Etymology

Diagnosis

Description

  • Small, solitary, unarmed, pleonanthic, monoecious palms. Stem short, erect, sometimes prostrate for a time, rather closely ringed with inconspicuous, narrow, oblique leaf scars. Leaves erect, almost always undivided, bifid, sometimes becoming split irregularly, marcescent; sheath short, tubular, eventually splitting opposite the petiole, margins with a few stiff fibres, covered with dull, reddish-brown scales; petiole short, slender, flat and glabrous adaxially; rounded, with dark brown scales, often becoming brown-dotted abaxially, blade wedge-shaped, pinnately ribbed, distinctly plicate, thin but rather tough, deep green adaxially, silvery green abaxially, glabrous adaxially, small membranous scales and trichomes along large ribs abaxially, transverse veinlets not evident, large close ribs more evident abaxially, alternating with bands of small veins on both surfaces. Inflorescences solitary, ± erect, becoming ± curved in fruit, interfoliar, spicate or subdigitately branched to 1 order, protandrous; peduncle long, slender, covered with dark brown, caducous tomentum; prophyll tubular, pointed, thin, papery, with 2, very narrow, lateral keels, covered with dark red, caducous tomentum; peduncular bracts 1(–2), tubular, like the prophyll but longer; rachis very short, bearing short, ovate, pointed bracts, the first 2 (or more) empty, others subtending rachillae; rachillae 1 or few (2–8), about equal in length, bearing sunken ovate bracts, each subtending a triad of flowers borne in a pit, pits with distinct upper ‘lips’ which lock the bract over the developing flowers, rachillae ending in long, slender, pointed tips, densely scaly; floral bracteoles 3, the outer bracteole shallow, the middle 2-keeled, the inner acute. Staminate flowers exserted at anthesis, borne laterally and outside the pistillate flower; sepals 3, briefly connate where adnate basally to the receptacle, free above, narrow, elongate, keeled, acute or emarginate apically; petals 3, about as long as the sepals, basally adnate to the receptacle, connate in a tube for about 2/3 their length, free and valvate above; stamens 6–ca. 24, filaments connate and adnate basally to the receptacle forming a solid stalk-like base, united in a tube for an equal distance, distally free, erect, terete and tapering, connective bifid, tanniniferous, bearing separated thecae, inflexed in bud, ± erect at anthesis, introrse; pistillode shallow, irregularly 3-lobed. Pollen ellipsoidal, usually with obvious asymmetry, including pyriform; aperture a distal sulcus; ectexine tectate, perforate and micro-channelled, and rugulate, aperture margin slightly finer; infratectum columellate; longest axis 37–43 µm [1/5]. Pistillate flowers slightly asymmetrical; sepals 3, distinct, chaffy, imbricate in bud; petals 3, connate for about 2/3 their length in a soft tube, valvate and chaffy distally; staminodes ca. 15, connate basally and adnate to the petal tube, free, somewhat fleshy, angled or terete distally, tips dark like the connectives; gynoecium trilocular, triovulate, 3-lobed, style elongate, grooved, ending in 3 triangular, stigmatic lobes, probably recurved at anthesis, ovule anatropous, pendulous, attached in the top of the locule, only 1 normally maturing. Fruit ellipsoidal-ovoid, 1-seeded, dorsiventrally compressed, slightly keeled apically, abortive carpels and stigmatic remains basal; epicarp smooth, mesocarp fleshy to dry, with an inner layer of closely appressed, longitudinal fibres, endocarp thin, crustaceous, shiny. Seed ellipsoidal to obovoid, slightly compressed laterally, hilum small, basal, raphe encircling the seed, somewhat impressed, unbranched to furcate or with a few parallel branches, endosperm homogeneous; embryo eccentrically basal. Germination adjacent-ligular; eophyll bifid. Cytology not studied. (J. Dransfield, N. Uhl, C. Asmussen, W.J. Baker, M. Harley and C. Lewis. 2008)

Anatomy

Relationships

Uses

Bibliography

  • Dransfield, J. , Uhl, N. , Asmussen, C. , Baker, W.J. , Harley, M. & Lewis, C. 2008. Genera Palmarum. The evolution and classification of palms. Kew Publishing, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew.