Alcantarea benzingii

Alcantarea benzingii Leme sp.nov. Bromelia Sep1995 Vol2 #3 p20-21.

A A. farneyi (Martinelli & Costa) .T. R. Grant, cui affinis, foliis basi utriculum tubulosum conformantibus, laminis sublinearibus (haud linear-triangularibus), duplo latioribus, inflorescentia ca. 16 cm longa, laxa, bracteis floriteris anguste ovatis (haud late ovatis vel suborbicularibus) et distincte longioribus, sepalis longioribus differt.

TYPUS. Espirito Santo, Forno Grande; R. Kautsky s.n., florida em cultivo, E. M. C. Leme 850, em janeiro-fevereiro de 1995. HOLOTYPUS.HB.

PLANT rupicolous, flowering ca. 70cm high, propagating by many basal offsets;
LEAVES ca. 6, ca. 45cm long, erect to sub-erect, forming a narrow tube at base 18cm long and 3cm in diameter;
SHEATHS narrowly oblong-elliptic, 18 x 4.5cm, obscurely and sparsely brown-lepidote, nerved, green;
BLADES sublinear, 27 x 3cm, not narrowed at base, apex acuminate-caudate, green and lustrous on both sides, nerved, obscurely lepidote abaxially, glabrous adaxially.
SCAPE ca. 45cm long, ca. 4 mm in diameter, stiff, suberect, slightly exceeding the leaves, green, glabrous;
SCAPE BRACTS narrowly lanceolate, acuminate, 50- 70 x 1.5mm, erect and cnfolding the scape, reddish-yellow, finely nervate when dry, exceeding the internodes.
INFLORESCENCE simple, lax, 16 x 6cm wide, suberect to patent with slightly ascending apex.
RACHIS flexuous, green, glabrous, ca 3mm in diameter.
FLORAL BRACTS narrowly ovate, slightly concave, 45-50 x 25-30mm, acute and shortly apiculate, base truncate, enfolding the flower, finely nervate when dry, ecarinate, reddish-ycllow, obscurely brown-lepidote mainly inside, about as long as thc sepals
FLOWERS ca 7, laxly arrangcd, distichous, suberect, not secund, ca 50mm long (excluding the petals), pedicels stout, ca 8mm long, ca 6mm in diameter, green.
SEPALS oblong-clliptic, subacute, 36-38 x 14mm, glabrous, green toward thc base, greenish-yellow toward the apex, free, ecarinate,
PETALS sublinear, apex obtuse to slightly emarginate, 65- 75 x 7mm, yellow, flaccid, strongly spiralescent-recurved, bearing two linear, obtuse and entire, 20-25mm long appendages at base with free lobes 4 x 2mm.
STAMENS about as long as the petals but exposed at anthesis.
ANTHERS linear, ca 8mm long, base and apex obtuse, fixed near the base;
STYLE: slightly surpassing the anthers.
STIGMA simple-erect, white, blades spreading, ca 3mm long.

For the study of this new taxon, we used a specimen (probably a descendant of the type) that flowered in cultivation , providing additional information, as well as the original description, drawings and photograph of A. farneyi. A benzingii is distinguishcd from the above mentioned spececs by the leaves that form a narrow tube at base (not bulbous), sublinear leaf blades (not linear-triangular) which are twice as broad in this spccies, a l6-cm-long inflorescence with laxly arranged flowers, floral bracts narrowly ovate (not widely ovate to suborbiculate) and distinctly longer, plus longer sepals.

Updated 12/12/06