Aechmea aquilega
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Aechmea aquilega
Species. Formerly genus Gravisia.
Peter Sargent, Mossman. Photo Ken Woods.

Aechmea aquilega (Salisb.) Griseb.forma aquilega, Fl. Brit. W.1. 592.1864. (Detail from Filho & Leme in Frag. Atl. NE Brazil. 193-7. 2007)
Basionym: Bromelia aquilega Salisb., Parad. Lond. 1 (2): Pl-40.1806.
Caraguata planta crescens in arboribus & putridis arborum caudicibus Piso, Hist. nat. bras. 86.1648.
Bromelia exsudans Lodd., Bot. Cab. g: pl. 801. 1824. Type: West Indies; typified by original description and plate, in the absence of any known specimen.
Tillandsia exsudans Lodd. ex Desf., Cat. Hort. Paris ed. 3: 50-1829.
Billbergia capituligera Rchb., Iconogr. Bot. Exot.3:14-1827-30. Nom. nud.
Bromelia Surinamensis Miq., Linnaea 78: 378. 1844. Type: Suriname, Tourtonne, Focke 808 (U).
Hoplophytum paniculatum Beer, Fam. Bromel.: 130. 1856. Nom. nov. prov. Bromelia exsudans Lodd.
Hoplophytum bracteatum K. Koch, Wochenschr Vereines Beford. Gartenbaues Konigl. Preuss.Staaten 3:306. 1860; as to material cited, not as to name-bringing synonym; non Aiton 1811.
Hohenbergia exsudans (Lodd.) E. Morren, Belgique Hort. 29: 352. 1879; as to basionym not as to material illustrated.
Bromelia capituligera E. Morren, Belgique Hort. 29: 352.1879. Nom. nud.
Aechmea meyeri Baker, J. Bot. 18: 16. 1880.Type:Tobago, L. C. Meyers. n. (K, holotype).
Aechmea exsudans (Lodd.) Baker, Handb. Bromel.44.1889.
Aechmea aquilegioides Kuntze, Revis. Gen. Pl. 2: 698. 1891. Type: Costa Rica, Kuntze 2113 (NY, holotype).
Gravisia aquilega (Salisb.) Mez, in Mart. Fl. bras. 3 (3): 300-1892.
Gravisia exsudans (Lodd.) Mez, in Mart. Fl. bras. 3 (3): 300-1892.
Aechmea hellae W. Weber, Feddes Repert. 97 (3-4): 111, pl. 112. 1986. Type: Brazil, Bahia, Brumado, saxicolous, ca. 400 m elev., A. Seidel 937 (HAL, holotype, n. v.).

PLANT terrestrial or saxicolous, flowering 100-120 cm tall.
LEAVES 12 to 20, rosulate, suberect, coriaceous, forming at base a broad crateriform rosette;
SHEATHS elliptic, 20-28 x 10-13 mm, slightly purplish-wine mainly inside and toward the apex, castaneous toward the base, densely and minutely brown-lepidote on both sides;
BLADES sublinear, not narrowed toward the base, 85-100 x 5-10 cm (at base), green, yellowish-green to dark reddish, subdensely white-lepidote mainly abaxially, apex acute and distinctly apiculate, margins densely (near the base) to laxly (toward the apex) spinose, spines brown, narrowly triangular, flat, strongly antrorse-uncinate, 2-5 mm long, 1-2 mm wide at base, 2-20 mm apart.
SCAPE stout, erect, 70-80 cm long, ca. 1.2 cm in diameter;
SCAPE BRACTS sublinear-lanceolate, acute and apiculate, 18-20 x 5 cm, stramineous, coriaceous, nerved, entire, densely white lanate, distinctly exceeding the internodes, erect and completely concealing the scape.
INFLORESCENCE subdensely to laxly thyrsoid, tripinnate from base to middle, bipinnate near the apex, exceeding the leaves, erect, 25-40 cm, 14-18 cm in diameter at base,
RACHIS stout, 8 mm in diameter near the base, ca. 4 mm in diameter near the apex, flexuous, densely white lanate;
PRIMARY BRACTS sublinear-lanceolate, acuminate, entire, finely nerved inside, subdensely and minutely white lepidote, yellowish, orange to reddish-rose, thinly coriaceous, spreading to reflexed, often distinctly longer to sometimes equaling the branches, decreasing in size toward the inflorescence apex, 6-12 x 1.5-3 cm;
PRIMARY BRANCHES 10 to 20, polystichously and laxly to subdensely arranged, suberect, decreasing in length toward the inflorescence apex, 5-12 cm long, stipes 1-7 x 0.4-0.8 cm, ebracteate, complanate, red, densely white lanate, the basal primary branches bearing 2 to 3 secondary branches densely and subdistichously aggregated at the apex, forming subflabellate terminal heads 3.5-4 cm wide at apex, the upper primary branches resembling the secondary branches but on short but distinct stipes, rachis inconspicuous, red, 1.5-5 mm in diameter;
SECONDARY BRACTS broadly ovate, acute and distinctly mucronate, 40-42 x 25-28 mm, including the ca. 5 mm long apical pungent mucro, equaling to slightly exceeding the secondary branches, coriaceous, carinate, inconspicuously lepidote inside, glabrous outside, yellowish to orange;
SECONDARY BRANCHES sessile or nearly so, subovate, slightly complanate, 40 x 10-20 mm, the basal secondary branches 4- to 5-flowered, the upper ones 2- to 3-flowered, 40-45 mm long;
FLORAL BRACTS ovate, acute to acuminate and pungent-mucronate, thinly coriaceous, yellow toward the apex, distinctly nerved, entire, minutely lepidote inside, glabrous outside, about equaling to shorter than the sepals, carinate, enfolding the flowers, 25-35 x 14-20 mm, including the 2-4 mm apical mucro.
FLOWERS 35-42 mm long (when petals extended), odorless, nearly erect at anthesis, subdistichously arranged, sessile;
SEPALS subobovate, distinctly asymmetrical, the lateral membranous, rounded wing distinctly shorter than the midnerve, straight, neither twisted at anthesis nor afterwards, greenish-yellow, sparsely lepidote inside to glabrous, carinate 18-22 x 8-10 mm, connate at base for ca. 1.5 mm, apex acute and mucronulate, mucro 1-2 mm long;
PETALS narrowly sublinear-lanceolate, acuminate, 30-35 x 4-5 mm, free, orange, erect except for the suberect-recurved apex at anthesis, brownish and erect afterwards, bearing at base 2 short spatulate-obovate, truncate, subentire to inconspicuously denticulate-crenulate appendages 2-3 x 1.5-2 mm, as well as 2 conspicuous callosities slightly shorter than the filaments;
FILAMENTS 21-25 mm long, complanate and dilated toward the apex, yellowish, the antesepalous ones free, the antepetalous ones basally adnate to the petals for 15-20 mm; POLLEN globose, multiporate, exine foveolate, muri thickened;
ANTHERS 6-7 mm long, dorsifixed at the middle, base obtuse, apex apiculate;
STIGMA conduplicate-spiral, subglobose-fusiform, orange, margins inconspicuously crenulate to nearly entire; OVARY narrowly clavate, trigonous, 8-10 mm long, ca. 6 mm in diameter at the apex, green, sparsely white lepidote to glabrous; epigynous tube narrowly funnelform, 2-3 mm long; placentation apical; ovules caudate.
FRUITS unknown.
Type: "Jamaica", D. Hurlock s. n., no specimen preserved, typified by the original plate.

PERNAMBUCO: Aguas Belas, near Aldeia do Ouricuri, 7 Aug. 2002, V A. Silva s. n. (UFP); Cabo de Santo Agostinho, Engenho Boa Vista, 9 Jan. 1968, Ana Lima s.n., (IPA); ibidem, near Engenho Cedro, 30 Nov. 1961, S. Tavares 873 (HST); ibidem, Pontezinha, BR-101 Sul, km 96, 1 May 1997, G. S. Baracho & J. A. Siqueira-Filho 590/579, cult. Bbio 724 (UFP); Igarassu, Usina Sao Jose, Mata do Engenho dAgua, 28 May 2002, J. A. Siqueira-Filho 7278 & E. Leme, cult. Bbio 452 (UFP); Jaboatao dos Guarara¬pes, Pedreira Guarany, Engenho Comporta, 12 Jul. 2005, J. A. Siqueira-Filho 1512, J. B. Oliveira & M. S. Leite, cult. Bbio 631 (UFP); Petrolina, 14 May 1974, A. Lima et al. 74/¬7632 (IPA); Recife, Jardim Botanico do Curado, 25 Febr. 1992, R. Pereira et al. 766 (IPA); Sao Lourenco da Mata, Mata do Camocim, 30 Dec. 1929, B. Pickel 2233 (IPA). ALAGOAS: Campo Alegre, Fazenda Fonte Grande, Bacia do Rio Manibu, 27 Dec. 2000, L A. Bayma 522 (MAC); Restinga near Marechal Deodoro, 8 Dec. 1972, A. Lima 72-8224 (IPA); ibidem, Dec. 1992, M. J. C. Silva s. n. (MUFAL); ibidem, 7 Febr. 2003, J. Souza 25, B. Falcao & L. F A. Silva, (MAC); ibidem, APA de Santa Rita, Saco da Pedra, 20 Febr. 1991, C. S. S. Barros 706, F B. P Moura & R. P Lyra-Lemos (MAC); Traipu, Serra das Maos, 22 Mar. 1983, G. L. Esteves 7715 & M. N. R. Staviski (MAC).

According to the prologue of Bromelia aquilega - the basionym of Aechmea aquilega - the species was described based on a specimen from Jamaica that flowered on 30 September 1804 and was illustrated by W Hooker, according to the plate that typifies the species. The author of the species states in the protologue that, although he had grown this bromeliad for many years, he never saw it in flower. Furthermore, he explained that "No specimens being preserved, I cannot describe any part of it from my own knowledge except the leaves (...)" because he did not see the plant in flower.
Interestingly, Salisbury also stated in the protologue that "the flowers exuded a liquid of the colour and consistence of milk, in such abundance as to drop from them", but in spite of this abundance, the trait was not depicted in the plate that typifies the species. However, the same information was mentioned when Loddiges published Bromelia exsudans from the West Indies in 1824. Although this author stated that "the flowers are sessile and emit from their calyces a sort of secretion, which looks like soft wax, but if touched, instantly melts into water of a bitterish unpleasant taste", and expressed this trait in the species' name, the plate that is part of the protologue shows a taxon identical to B. aquilega and does not show clearly or prominently the above-mentioned secretion.
E. Morren's publication in 1879 provides new data on secretion production by species associated with Bromelia aquilega and B. exsudans. In a detailed study aimed at describing B. exsudans, expressly mentioning his protologue as well as proposing new synonyms and transferring the species to the genus Hohenbergia, Morren (1879) painted a specimen showing an abundant white secretion. However, the specimen depicted is clearly discordant with the original concept extracted from the plate of B. exsudans published in 1824. In his comments, Morren stated that his specimen was of unknown wild origin, mentioning the white secretion and the capituliform inflorescence of his plant which was clearly different from the original plate of B. exsudans that shows a longer, sparsely branched, yellowish green inflorescence.
Actually, Morren's specimen, which could not be linked to the original concept of B. aquilega and B. exsudans, was an unknown species at the time, that is only now described, in this chapter, as A. lactifera Leme & J. A. Siqueira.
Finally, Oliva-Esteve (1999), when describing A. aquilega fo. alba from Venezuela, referred to a "whitish mucilaginous substance" covering the inflorescence and also provided a photograph (figure 17 of the protologue) where it is possible to recognize this substance. Hence, it can be verified that A. aquilega may occasionally produce the milky substance mentioned in the protologue, as do other species of the same taxonomic complex, such as A. chrysocoma Baker and A. lactifera (see comments below). The greatest amount of this substance ever recorded was seen in the latter species.
Morren (1879) also referred to Hohenbergia capitata Schult. & Schult. f., {basionym of Aechmea capitata (Schult. & Schult. f.) Baker} as a synonym of his Hohenbergia exsudans. Although this concept was not accepted by Smith & Downs (1979), it was followed by Read & Luther (1991) in their revision of the Aechmea-Gravisia complex. However, judging from the morphological characteristics that are given in the protologue and in the holotype of H. capitata, especially the rose-colored floral bracts and petals spreading above the calyx, plus the place of origin being Bahia, where several recently collected specimens represent this species very well (Leme, pers. obs.), we believe that H. capitata does not belong to the A. aquilega complex. Therefore, we prefer to maintain the concept of Smith & Downs (1979) for this taxon.
Aechmea aquilega is a member of the Gravisia complex proposed by Read & Luther (1991) with species belonging to Aechmea subgen. Aechmea. Most of the species in this complex grow in Northeast Brazil, the southern limit being northern Espirito Santo. Besides A. aquilega, the following taxa make up the Gravisia complex: A. amicorum B. R. Silva & H. Luther, A. blanchetiana (Baker) L. B. Sm., A. callichroma Read & Baensch, A. discordiae Leme, A. emmerichiae Leme, A. eurycorymbus Harms, A. fraudulosa Mez, A. lanjouwii (L. B. Sm.) L. B. Sm., A. leptantha (Harms) Leme & J. A. Siqueira, A. mulfordii L. B. Sm., A. rubens (L. B. Sm.) L. B. Sm, A. sucreana Martinelli & C. Vieira and A. werdermannii Harms, as well as the new species presented below.
In Brazil, typical A. aquilega plants are confused with A. mulfordii, especially in herbarium material. This species lives on sandy Restinga soils on the northern coast of Bahia, the type specimen being from Portao, north of Salvador. The traits that distinguish A. mulfordii from A. aquilega are the mostly orange to reddish orange inflorescence and the lower primary bracts that are generally shorter than the basal branches in A. mulfordii. Fascicles of the basal branches of this species are not grouped together at the apex and are elongate (to subcylindrical) especially at the end of flowering.
Aechmea aquilega is rather plastic in relation to habitat. It is a heliophile, but also tolerates moderate shading. It is both epiphytic and terrestrial, living in the coastal zone and the hinterland (Sertao), in xeric habitats of the Caatinga and Campos Rupestres, as well as in mesic to wet conditions of the Restingas and Atlantic forest, from sea level to altitudes over 1,000 m. Bahia is its southern limit, while to the north, it is widely distributed in the Amazon region, including Venezuela and the Guianas, ranging to Trinidad and Tobago.
Natural populations of A. aquilega in Pernambuco are under intense pressure from man. Land speculation near the beach has restricted populations to the forests farther inland, like those of the Gurjau complex in Cabo de Santo Agostinho and of Usina Sao Jose in Igarassu. The same is true of Paraiba and Alagoas. The species apparently suffers less from man's activities in the Caatinga.
Aechmea aquilega flowers during the dry season, from September to March, and is typically ornithophilous. It is pollinated by resident hummingbirds like Phaethornis gounellei at the Raso da Catarina Ecological Station in Bahia (J. A. Siqueira, pers. obs.).

Aechmea aquilega (Salisbury) Grisebach, Fl. Brit. W. Ind. 592. 1864.
Detail from Read and Luther in Selbyana 12:54-67. 1991
Bromelia aquilega Salisbury, Parad. Lond. pl. 40. 1806.
Hohenbergia capitata Schultes filius in Roemer & Schultes, Syst. 7(2): 1252. 1830. Type: BRAZIL. Bahia: Almada, Dec 1818, Martius s.n. (M).
Aechmea capitata (Schultes filius) Baker, Journ. Bot. London 17: 167.1879.
Aechmea exsudans (Loddiges) Baker, Handb. Bromel. 44. 1889.
Aechmea chrysocoma Baker, Handb. Bromel. 44. 1889. Type: Devansaye s.n. cultivated 1881 (LG). now species in own right
Hohenbergia chrysocoma E. Morren ex Baker, Handb. Bromel. 44. 1889. Name only.
Gravisia aquilega (Salisbury) Mez, in Martius, Fl. Brasil. 3: 300. 1892.
Gravisia exsudans (Loddiges) Mez, in Martius, Fl. Brasil. III. 3: 300. 1892.
Gravisia chrysocoma (Baker) Mez, in Martius, FI. Brasil. III. 3: 301, t. 65. 1892.
Gravisia capitata (Schultes filius) L. B. Smith, Arq. Bot. S. Paulo II. 1: 57, pl. 73, fig. 2. 1941.
Aechmea aquilega var. chrysocoma (Baker) L. B. Smith, Phytologia 8: 219. 1962.
Aechmea hellae Weber, Feddes Repert., Berlin 97: 111-112.1986; J. Brom. Soc. 35(6): 265.1985 nom. nud.

Inflorescence of stipitate clusters of smaller fascicles of flowers, or simply a head of several nearly sessile fascicles of flowers;
Primary bracts bright red, pink, to dull rose;
Secondary bracts like the floral bracts and scarcely larger, green or yellow;
Floral bracts green to bright yellow;
Sepals yellow, connate ca. 4 mm.

DISTRIBUTION. Terrestrial or sometimes epiphytic or saxicolous, sea level to 650 m elev.; Costa Rica, Venezuela, Trinidad, Tobago, Guianas, northeastern Brazil.

DISCUSSION. Hohenbergia capitata Schultes. f. ( 1830) and Aechmea capitata (Schultes f.) Baker (1879) were treated in synonymy of A. exsudans (Lodd.) Baker (1889) by Baker (1889). Likewise, both names were treated in synonymy of Gravisia exsudans (Lodd.) Mez by Mez (1896). Furthermore, the senior author has observed and photographed plants resembling A. capitata. with the inflorescence forming a dense head of clustered fascicles of flowers, among other obviously A. aquilega and thought nothing of it until noting the distinction in Smith and Downs ( 1979). When Baker ( 1889: 44) described A. chrysocoma he said that its "Inflorescence {is} a capitulum composed of about 3 oblong or subglobose dense strobiliform spikes. . . ," and that it is also "allied to A. exsudans (Baker)," which is treated under A. aquilega by Smith and Downs (1979). We feel obligated to relegate A. capitata to synonymy of A. aquilega along with A. exsudans and numerous other variations (including A. chrysocoma) that have been named over the years for three reasons: 1) A. capitata is known from only the type and one other collection; 2) it is distinguished by characters possibly influenced by environmental conditions among the range of variation expected in A. aquilega, and 3) distinctions applied to A. aquilega and its variety chrysocoma differ from the original description of the latter, which compares favorably with A. capitata.

Aechmea aquilega forma alba Oliva-Esteve, Journ Brom. Soc. 49(2): 77. 1999.
A A. aquilega cui affinis, bracteis scapo cui albis, decoris recedit.
Type. Venezuela: CARABOBO: Tucacas. 20 m alt., Sept.1990. Grown in cultivation by its discoverer, Sra. Elsa de Baasch of Valencia, Venezuela s.n.(Holotype: VEN).

In this form the entire scape is white, including the primary bracts; the inflorescence has spreading branches terminating in stout heads, both the red and white flowering forms are covered with a whitish mucilaginous substance. The floral bracts are yellow-cream, acute and coriaceous; petals small, ligulate, yellow.
This form is very ornamental and could achieve a conspicuous contrast planted in conjunction with the other color forms.
At the National Exposition of Bromeliads, held in Caracas on April 18th through 20th, 1997, a young lady brought in a white-flowered specimen of Aechmea aquilega (Salisbury) Grisebach in to the show. To my knowledge, a white-flowered specimen had never been seen before. Elsa Monteverde de Baasch, a bromeliad enthusiast, collected the plant in 1990 near sea level in a dry coastal town named Tucacas, in Carabobo State. The species is more abundant however in Higuerote (Barlovento) about l00 km from Caracas in Miranda State, where it grows by the thousands. It can be found scattered all along the Venezuelan coast from 10 to 300 m elevation, including Margarita Island.
In Barlovento there is an enormous cocoa plantation with huge old shade trees covered with orchids, aroids, bromeliads and other epiphytes. Included among the bromeliads are: Aechmea aquilega var. aquilega (red form) which is the most common, followed by A. lingulata, A. nudicaulis, Guzmania monostachia, Tillandsia elongata var. subimbricata, T. juncea, T. fasciculata, V. procera var. rubra, V. splendens var. splendens, V. splendens var. formosa, and V. heliconioides.

Aechmea aquilega (Salisbury) Grisebach, Fl. Brit. W. Ind. 592. 1864.
Desc from S&D
Plant flowering to 1 m or higher.
Leaves rosulate, 1-1.5 m long;
Sheaths ample, densely brown-lepidote,
Blades ligulate, acute or attenuate with a stiff terminal cusp, 5-10 cm wide, laxly serrate with antrorse brown spines, covered with inconspicuous, brown-centered scales.
Scape erect, stout, densely farinose;
Scape-bracts erect and closely enveloping the scape, large, ovate, acute, mucronate, entire, obscurely brown lepidote, rose.
Inflorescence laxly thyrsoid from 10-20 stipitate heads, to 40 cm long; axes white-tomentulose, becoming glabrous;
Primary bracts broadly lanceolate. entire. bright red, the lower ones much exceeding the axillary branches;
Branches spreading, short and stout with few-flowered fascicles in terminal heads;
Secondary bracts like the floral bracts and scarcely larger.
Floral bracts ovate. acute, pungent. exceeded by the sepals, broadly convex, entire, coriaceoust glabrous;
Flowers to 36 mm long, glabrous.
Sepals strongly asymmetric, mucronate, 14 mm long;
Petals ligulate, flavous, bearing 2 scales at base;
Pollen more than 4-porate;
Ovary 10 mm long, trigonous; epigynous tube large; ovules caudate.

Aechmea aquilega var aquilega
Caraguata planta crescens in arboribus & putridis Arborum caudicibus Piso, Hist. Nat. Bras. 86. 1648.
Bromelia aquilega Salisbury, Parad. Lond. pl. 40. 1806.
Bromelia bracteata sensu Aiton, Hort. Kew. ed. 2. 2: 201. 1811; non Swartz, 1788. Based on Bromelia aquilega Salisbury.
Bromelia exsudans Loddiges, Bot. Cab. 9: pl. 801. 1824. Type. description and plate.
Bromelia paniculigera sensu Reichenbach, Ic. Exot. 3: 14, pl. 239, 240. 1827-30; non Swartz, 1788.
Billbergia capituligera Reichenbach, Ic. Exot. 3: 14. 1827-30; nomen.
Tillandsia exsudans Desfontaines, Cat. Hort. Paris ed. 3. 50. 1829; incorrectly attributed to Loddiges.
Bromelia surinamensis Miquel, Linnaea 18: 378. 1844. Type. Tourtonne, Suriname, Focke 808 (U).
Hoplophytum paniculatum Beer, Bromel. 130. 1856; in part, as to Bromelia exsudans Loddiges.
Hoplophytum bracteatum K. Koch, Wochenschr. GBrtn. 3: 306. 1860; as to material cited, not as to name-bringing synonym.
Hohenbergia exsudans (Loddiges) E. Morren, Belg. Hortic. 29: 352. 1879; as to basionym not as to material illustrated.
Bromelia capituligera E. Morren, Belg. Hortic. 29: 352. 1879; nomen, incorrectly attributed to Reichenbach.
Aechmea meyeri Baker, Jour. Bot. London 18: 16. 1880. Type. Tobago, L. C. Meyer (K).
Aechmea aquilegioides Kuntze, Rev. Gen. 2: 698. 1891. Type. Costa Rica, Kuntze 2113 (NY).
Floral and secondary bracts dull green.

Type. "Jamaica." In the absence of any known specimen adequately typified by the original plate.

Distribution. Terrestrial or sometimes epiphytic or saxicolous, sea level to 650 m alt, Costa Rica, Jamaica (?), Venezuela, Trinidad, Tobago, Guiana, northeastern Brazil.
VENEZUELA. Nueva Esparta: Isla Margarita, 18 Jul 1903, J. R. Johnston 302 (GH, US); Mar 1952, Foster 2801 (US); 2814 (US); La Sierra, Aug 1953, Gines 33 73 (US). Sucre: Cristobal Colon, 1923, Broadway 48 (GH, US); 511 (GH, US); Isla de Patos, 5 Mar 1958, Aitken & Downs 276 (US); 277 (US); Puerto de Hierro, Jul 1962, Steyermark & Agostini 91220 (US, VEN); 91283 (US, VEN). Monagas: Matusin to Quinquin, Jul 1959, Aristeguieta 3911(VEN). Aragua: La Trilla, Rancho Grande to Ocumare, 17 Oct 1951, Foster 2761 (US). Carabobo: Urama, 1939, Alston 6075 (BM, US). Falcon: Cerro Santa Ana, 13 Apr 1917, Curran & Haman 531 (GH); 721 (GH); Apr 1961, Aristeguieta 4624 (US, VEN). Bolivar: Miamo, Altiplanicie de Nuria, 8 Jan 1961, Steyermark 88256 (NY, US, VEN). TRINIDAD. Fendler 841 in part (BM); Marabella, 1868, Finlay 1999 (TRIN, US); Monos, 1889, Broadway 3509 (TRIN); Chaguanas, Jun 1890, Trinidad Her¬barium 4213 (TRIN); Aripo Savanna, Broadway 3631 (TRIN); 3962 (TRIN); 5341 (TRIN); Teteron Bay, 11 Mar 1920, Britton 481 (GH, NY, US); Manzanilla, 9 Mar 1921, Britton 2192 (GH, NY, US); Oropuche, 6 Mar 1925, Hombersley s n (F); Simmonds 265 (TRIN); Mayaro, Bailey 620 (BH); Laventille Hills, 11 May 1933, Broadway s n (GH); Mundo Nuevo, 5 Mar 1942, Pittendrigh 1 (US); Tamana, 1944, Pittendrigh 1112 (US); 1113 (US); 1255 (US); 1263 (US); Guayaguare, 15 Apr 1949, Simmonds 342 (TRIN); El Tucuche, 12 May 1949, Simmonds 361 (TRIN). TOBAGO. Oct 1889, Eggers 5677 (NY, US); Broadway 3639 (F, NY); Trinidad Herbarium 5572 (TRIN). GUYANA. Demerara: Hooroobea, 1887, Jenman 3826 (BRG, K); Atkinson Field, 29 Jan 1954, Irwin 228 (TEX). SURINAME. Paramaribo, Splitgerber 58 (L); Wullschlagel 1575 (BR); Lanjouw 582 (U); 8 Oct 1948, Foster 2377 (U); Voltzberg, Pulle 247 (U); Stahel & Gonggryp 6359 (U); Tourtonne, Kegel 941 (GOET); Post Republiek, Tulleken 217 (L); Moengo tapoe to Grote Zwieblzwamp, 12 Oct 1948, Lanjouw & Lindeman 798 (U, US). FRENCH GUIANA. Impossible Falls, Rio Camopi to Rio Oyapock, 10 Feb 1968, Oldeman & Sastre 155 (P); Saint Laurent to Garra, 20 Aug 1961, Schnell 11313 (US). BRAZIL. Amapa: Rio Iaue, Rio Oiapoque basin, 2° 53' N, 52° 22' W, 26 Aug 1960, Irwin, Pires & Westra 47859 (NY); Rio Ingarari, 2° 19' N, 52° 38' W, 15 Sep 1960, Irwin, Pires & Westra 48270 (NY); Rio Mutura, 2° 31' N, 52° 30' W, 20 Sep 1960, Irwin, Pires & Westra 48393 (NY). Para: Rio Gurupi, 1930, R. Lopes s n (R); Rio Irituia, 7 Jul 1908, C. F. Baker 433 (MG); Igarape Pitoro, 22 Sep 1958, Froes 34687 (IAN); Guajara, 3 Aug 1964, Irwin 5038 (NY, UB, US); km 70, Highway BR 22, 24 Aug 1964, Prance & Silva 58856 (NY, US); Cachoeira, km 96, Highway BR 22, 30 Oct 1965, Prance & Pennington 1820 (IAN, NY, US). Maran¬hao: Rio Maracagume, Oct 1932, Froes 1948a (GH, NY). Ceara: Riacho do Capim, Sep 1897, Huber s n (MG); Serra de Baturite, 23 Apr 1909, Ducke s n (MG); Serra de Maranguape, 24 Nov 1955, Lima 55-2390 (IPA). Pernambuco: Iguaracu, 3 Nov 1887, Ramage s n (BM); Tapera, 30 Dec 1929, Pickel 2233 (IPA). Ala¬goas: Marechal Deodoro, Andrade-Lima s n (IPA, US). Bahia: Salvador to Fiera, 17 Oct 1948, Foster 2433 (US); Portoa, Foster 84 (GH, R); Marau, 3 May 1968, Belem 3492 (NY, US).

Local name. Bosananas (Suriname); konnohonana (Suriname-Arawak); caraguata guacu (Brazil).

Aechmea aquilega var chrysocoma (Baker) L. B. Smith, Phytologia 8: 219. 1962.
Aechmea chrysocoma Baker, Handb. Bromel. 44. 1889.
Hohenbergia chrysocoma E. Morren ex Baker, Handb. Bromel. 44. 1889; nomen.
Gravisia chrysocoma (Baker) Mez, Mart. Fl. Bras. 3(3): 301, pl. 65. 1892.

Floral and secondary bracts bright yellow, a striking distinction in life but generally lost in dried herbarium specimens.
Type. Devansaye s n (holotype or clonotype, LG), cultivated, 1881.
Distribution. Epiphytic, saxicolous, and terrestrial, 480-1100 m alt, northeastern Brazil.
BRAZIL. Ceard: Baturite, Sep 1910, Ule 8993 (B); Jul 1961, Mee s n (SP); Aratuba, 7 Aug 1944, Cutler 8178 (MO, US). Paraiba: Agreste, 11 Dec 1958, Moraes 1996 (US). Pernambuco: Caxagua, 4 Oct 1887, Rid¬ley, Lea & Ramage s n (BM); Afogadas to Boa Viagem, 1 Mar 1939, Baker & Collins s n (GH); Cabo, Ilha to Ipojuca, 30 Nov 1961, Tavares 873 (US); 15 Nov 1961, Mee s n (SP, US); Jaboatao, 26 Nov 1961, Mee s n (SP, US). Bahia: Jacobina, 14 Jun 1939, Foster 91 (GH); Ituraqu to Maracas, 18 Oct 1948, Foster 2457 (US); Serrinha, 14 Jul 1964, Castellanos 25143 (GUA); Morro do Chapeu, Serra do Tombador, 19 Feb 1971, Irwin, Harley & Smith 32627 (IAN, NY, US).
Local name. Croata.

Aechmea capitata {Schultes filius) Baker, Jour. Bot. London 17: 167. 1879.
Fig 613 K-P.
Desc from S&D
Plant flowering to 1 m high.
Leaves about 16 in a funnelform rosette, to 7 dm long;
Sheaths very large, very broadly elliptic, covered with minute appressed dark castaneous scales, entire or toward the apex coarsely serrate;
Blades ligulate, subrounded and then narrowed into a short very stout rigid dark spine, 8-12 cm wide, sub densely serrate with dark nearly straight spines 8 mm long, densely and very minutely pale-lepidote on both sides.
Scape straight, stout, tomentose;
Scape bracts erect, imbricate and covering the scape, broadly lance-ovate, much thickened and rigid toward the dark pungent apex, elsewhere papyraceous, the lower serrate toward apex, the upper entire.
Inflorescence very densely ellipsoid or subglobose, 7-14 cm long, 9-10 cm in diameter;
Primary bracts like the upper scape-bracts but shorter, exceeding the lower branches;
Branches short but compound, very densely flowering.
Floral bracts broadly ovate with an acuminate rigid apex, slightly exceeded by the sepals, subpapyraceous, rose, minutely lepldote;
Flowers sessile.
Sepals free, very asymmetric with a large semiorbicular lateral wing, acute, rigid, to 18 mm long, strongly nerved, nearly glabrous;
Petals ca 2 cm long, bearing 2 short serrate scales at base, claw linear, blade elliptic, acuminate;
Stamens included, the second series highly adnate to the petals, anthers apiculate;
Ovary obovoid, 18 mm long with an epigynous tube 3 mm long; placentae extending the whole height of the cell; ovules long-caudate.
Type. Martius s n {holotype, M) Almada, Bahia, Dec 1818.
Distribution. Southern Bahia and Espirito Santo, Brazil.

Aechmea hellae W. Weber Feddes Repert., Berlin 97: 111-112.1986; J. Brom. Soc. 35(6): 265.1985 nom. nud.
Plant flowering to 110 cm high.
Leaves suberect to spreading, forming a rosette of about 90 cm in diameter;
Sheaths distinct, ovate, to 14 cm long, 11 cm wide, base pale ferruginous, the inner surface dark violet and densely dark brown lepidote, margins entire;
Blades lingulate, apices rounded and pungent, cuspidate, to 60 cm long, 9 cm wide, few canaliculated, minutely appressed lepidote, margins serrate with antrorse, brown spines to 3 mm long.
Scape erect, terete, to 75 cm long, 12 mm in diameter, white lepidote;
Scape-bracts erect, coriaceous, lanceolate and apiculate, enfolding the scape, to 14 cm long, 30 mm wide, appressed lepidote, margins entire, much longer than the internodes.
Inflorescence tripinnate composed, to 20 cm high, 10 cm in diameter, axis erect, white lepidote;
Primary bracts narrow lanceolate, to 10 cm long, 12 mm wide, submembranaceous, pale salmon-rose, boat shaped carinate, about of equal or to twice the length of the lateral branches, margins entire;
Lateral branches distant, short and stout-stemmed, divergent, composed of 2-3 densely capitate spikes;
Secondary bracts similar to the floral bracts but somewhat larger.
Flowers subsessile, to 38 mm long.
Floral bracts lance-ovate, acute, to 28 mm long, 15 mm wide, carinate, nerved, pale salmon-rose, white lepidote;
Sepals lanceolate, pungent apiculate, coriaceous, with strongly asymmetric hyaline margins, 20 mm long, 10 mm wide, pale salmon-rose;
Petals narrowly ligulate, 30 mm long, orange, the inner base with two entire ligula each,
Stamens and style included.
Ovary somewhat trigonous, to 12 mm long, 7 mm in diameter; epigynous tube very distinct and large;

Leg. Alvim Seidel no.931. Brazil: Bahia, Brumado, on rocks 400 msm. Holotype WEB 621.

Mr. Seidel found this handsome Aechmea, which is closely related to Ae. aquilega, growing on rocks in full sun in a very arid region (nine months without rainfall). Named in honor of the collector's wife, Hella F. Seidel, for her great help and interest in bromeliad cultivation.

From Till in Linzer biol. Beitr. 27/1: 413-421. 1995
Bromelia surinamensis MIQUEL
Linnaea 18; 378 (1844).
Bromelia surinamensis MIQ., Surinam. H.C. Focke s.n, (HAL, isotype).
Note: Although Focke's collection number "808" and the locality "Tourtonne" are missing there is no doubt that the specimen in HAL is a duplicate from Focke's original collection. Currently treated as a synonym of Aechmea aquilega (SALISB.) GRISEB. var. aquilega.

Updated 13/05/21