10952 - Bromeliads (Garden) - 2013-04-29|
(Dimension: 2132 x 1452 pixels - Counter: 10455)
(Uploaded as: Portea sp.)
Locality: "Birdrock Number: MG270
collected by Bill Baker [this was on original tag, I think, or a note added from Pam at some time in the past] (collected '97) JA [John Arden or was that to mean collected by John Anderson? - normally JA is John Arden in Birdrock's references] 11/97 to Birdrock."
Photographer: Andrew Wilson
Note: At last, after overcoming predation factors, I have produced images of undamaged flowers. Here is one of them - image 8. This would appear to lay to rest the P. alatisepala hypothesis (about which Eric had expressed doubts). Checking Derek's suggestion I checked in Selby files for Aechmea rubrolilacina and found the image, shown here as 9. This would seem to check Derek's suggestion and confirm identificaton as Ae. rubrolilacina (Leme).
(Click on the picture to enlarge)
- Identification (10857): Uwe Scharf (2013-02-18) =Portea alatisepala
- Bromeliophiles,I got this plant via Mr. Prinsler (Germany), who bought it long ago from Tropiflora. The name on my tag is Portea alatisepala ... and it's red!
- Add Note (10858): Eric Gouda (2013-02-18) - It is a young stage and I doubt it is P.alatisepala. For your reference I have posted two pictures of that species. (Sent: email@example.com)
- Add Note (10857): Derek Butcher (2013-02-18) - Everyone seems to be suggesting Portea alatisepala but I have another suggestion and perhaps more feasible! >:-}
Portea alatisepala was described by Philcox in 1992 for a plant found in 1977. It seems he was clearing his desk at Kew just prior to his retirement! Anyway, some of his taxa had already been described and named so they disappeared under synonymy. Portea alatisepala stayed on.
In 1993 Leme described Aechmea rubro-lilacima even though it had the attributes of a Portea. A plant got to Australia and got me confused as to how a plant with a Portea inflorescence was called an Aechmea. So I contacted the guru Harry Luther. He said he had difficulty in separating these taxa and sent me several photocopies of details he had at Selby Gardens. Guess what I just found? A note in Harry's scrawl which says A. rubrolilacina ex hort J Anderson was Leme 1784. This links with your reference.
I include details of both taxa and you can do a bit of butchering to see which description is closest.
- Add Note (10857): Paul Turvey (2013-02-18) - Portea alatisepala was described as having sepals with lateral wings that are strikingly extended well past the spine, hence the name, while Leme's description of Aechmea rubro-lilacina indicates clearly that the lateral wings of the sepals are not extended for this species. Erics pics of P. alatisepala show these extended lateral wings on the sepals. They can be a bit difficult to distinguish from a distance on the flowers with petals fully open, but they are clearly visible on the flowers with spent petals because the lateral wings persist. These prominent lateral wings are also very conspicuous on the red-foliaged version of P. alatisepala. I can see no evidence of them on the plant in this post so along with Eric, I suspect it is not P. alatisepala, but a bit more development would help to make this certain. (Sent: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Add Note (10869): Eric Gouda (2013-03-04) - Don't see any petals yet, could you add a picture with an open flower please? (Sent: email@example.com)
- Add Note (10871): Andrew Wilson (2013-03-04) - Images 2 and 3 of this 'Portea sp.' show the complete inflorescence, the latter in a more mature state than the former. Individual flowers are not yet opened except where insects have torn back some of the purple sepal tissue (4). One of those flowers is shown (5) removed from the plant with all sepals (above the level shown) peeled back. Petal and stamen structure appear damaged. An undamaged flower was removed from the inflorescence (6) and its sepals were stripped. Petals are now shown, with their color a light purple in this premature stage. Stamens are white. These may become exserted slightly under natural opening but, at this unnatural, premature state, that cannot be stated with certainty. (Sent: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Add Note (10871): Peter Tristram (2013-03-06) - In the photo the left plant bits don't have alate sepals so closer to Ae. rubrolilacina and the right side parts have alate sepals so closer to P. alatisepala. I can't find the original labels in the gardens where they live to see the sources. Seems all in the sepals really, as Paul says. (Sent: email@example.com)
- Add Note (10857): Andrew Wilson (2013-04-29) - Finally, after overcoming problems of predation, I have obtained image of flowers that are undamaged. Image 9 shows one of them. This provides the floral information requested by Eric and seems to lay aside the hypothesis of Portea alatisepala as the species. So, I then checked Derek's suggestion that the species was Aechmea rubrolilacina by looking through Selby files. Image 10 shows a copied image of that species. This would appear to confirm the identity as Ae. rubrolilacina (Leme) .
- Identification (10857): Eric Gouda (2013-05-06) =Aechmea rubro-lilacina
- You can see, both species looks very much like each other and without dissecting a flower it still is tricky. I agree with Derek that it looks more like Aechmea rubro-lilacina. I will remove image 9, because it confuses belonging to this plant. It can be found in the Journal of the Bromeliad Society 52:48 (Sent: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Add Note (10872): Paul Turvey (2015-06-04) - Sorry about the late comment, I've just come across this again. I suggest that image #8 of the branch with maturing berries added after the last discussion helps to clarify some key characteristics which indicate this plant is not Ae. rubro-lilacina:
Leme's description of Ae. rubro-lilacina has short pedicels approx. 0.2-0.6 x length of ovary (2-6 mm vs ovary 10mm). The plant pictured has pedicels relatively very much longer than this, at least 1-1.5 times length of ovary (image 3) even after the ovary has extended during maturation (image #8). The sepals are at least half-connate vs barely connate for Ae. rubro-lilacina. Also, the floral bracts are small and narrowly triangular, extending just past the bases of the elongate pedicels and nowhere near the ovaries, as in image 8 with maturing berries and just visible in silhouette in a few places in image #3 just pre-anthesis, but not visible in any of the images except where viewed from below the bases of the pedicels. This contrasts with the description of Ae. rubro-lilacina with well-developed floral bracts, elliptic, 10-17mm long, equaling height of ovary.
The plant pictured appears to be a very close match to Portea petropolitana v. noettigii as described in Smith & Downs 1979 including very small floral bracts, elongate pedicels, connate sepals and branching with branch length less than pedicels, except that the pedicels in the pictures here at 1-1.5 x ovary length appear to be a little shorter than those described for P. p. v. noettigii at 2-4 x times ovary length.
Possibly this plant is a hybrid, but that would need chance combinations giving very close similarity to Portea petropolitana v. noettigi in many visible characteristics with differences confined to relatively small differences in pedicel length. A much simpler explanation would be that this plant is part of the natural range of variation in Portea petropolitana v. noettigii - assuming the rest of the plant fits the description:-) (Sent: email@example.com)