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Sonerila pulneyensis


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Family Melastomataceae

Herbs, shrubs , or trees (to 20 m tall), erect , climbing , or rarely epiphytic. Stipules lacking. Leaves simple , commonly opposite and decussate with one of a pair slightly smaller than other, rarely verticillate or alternate by abortion of one of a pair, usually 1-4(or 5) secondary veins on each side of midvein , originating at or near base and anastomosing apically, tertiary veins numerous, parallel, and connecting secondary veins and midvein but in Memecylon secondary veins pinnate and tertiary veins reticulate . Inflorescences cymose , umbellate , corymbose , in paniculate clusters , or a cincinnus, rarely flowers single, fascicled, or born on a spike; bracts sometimes conspicuous and persistent . Flowers bisexual , actinomorphic but androecium often slightly zygomorphic, usually (3 or) 4- or 5(or 6) -merous, perianth biseriate , perigynous; bracteoles opposite, usually caducous . Hypanthium funnel-shaped, campanulate , cyathiform , or urceolate . Calyx lobes (3-) 5(or 6), valvate (rarely connate , but not in Chinese species) . Petals (3-) 5(or 6), equal to number of sepals, distinct , imbricate. Stamens usually twice as many as petals and in 2 whorls, rarely as many as petals by loss of 1 whorl, isomorphic or dimorphic ; filaments distinct, often geniculate , inflexed in bud; anthers typically 2-celled, introrse , basifixed , dehiscent by 1 or 2 apical pores or by short longitudinal slits (Astronia, Memecylon) ; connective often variously appendaged. Pistil and style 1; stigma minute, capitate or truncate . Ovary commonly inferior or semi-inferior, locules usually (3 or) 4 or 5(or 6) with numerous anatropous ovules , rarely 1-loculed and ovules ca. 9 (Memecylon) ; placentation axillary , parietal (Astronia and, outside China, Pternandra Jack ), or free central (Memecylon) . Fruit a dry or fleshy capsule or a berry, loculicidally dehiscent or indehiscent. Seeds (when 3-6-loculed) usually small, curved through half a circle (cochleate) or wedge-shaped (cuneate), in Memecylon seeds large and ovoid ; endosperm absent.

Between 156 and 166 genera (150-160 in Melastomataceae sensu stricto and six in Memecylaceae here considered part of Melastomataceae) and ca. 4500 species (ca. 4050 in Melastomataceae sensu stricto and 450 in Memecylaceae [Olisbeoideae if considered a subfamily of Melastomataceae]) : primarily in tropical and subtropical regions; 21 genera (five endemic) and 114 species (72 endemic) in China.

Chinese genera of economic value include Osbeckia (medicine) and Melastoma (wild fruit and ornamental flowers) .[1]

Genus Sonerila

Herbs, shrublets , or shrubs , branched. Stems usually 4-sided, winged or not, usually pubescent with simple or glandular trichomes . Petiole winged or not, usually pubescent; leaf blade thin, secondary veins 2-4(or 5) on each side of midvein , base usually cordate and often oblique , margin serrulate with each tooth having a terminal seta, apex acute or acuminate. Inflorescences terminal or sometimes axillary , scorpioid cymes or subumbellate, pedunculate ; bracts small, caducous . Flowers small, 3[or 6]-merous. Hypanthium tubular-campanulate, 3-sided, 6-ribbed, pubescent. Calyx lobes broadly triangular, small, very short. Petals pink, red, or purplish red, oblong-elliptic. Stamens 3[or 6], equal or unequal; filaments filiform ; anthers subulate to broadly ovate , dehiscence poricidal ; connective not inflated . Ovary inferior, urceolate , apex with a membranous 3-lobed crown. Style filiform; stigma apiculate . Capsule campanulate to tubular-campanulate, crown woody and exserted from calyx; hypanthium 3[or 6]-sided, 6-ribbed, usually with sparse glandular trichomes. Seeds numerous , cuneate, small, glabrous or small tuberculate .

About 150 species: tropical Asia; six species (three endemic) in China.

Some 240 names have been published in this genus, and there may be as many as 150 species.[2]


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Similar Species

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Members of the genus Sonerila

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Further Reading

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  1. Jie Chen & Susanne S. Renner "Melastomataceae". in Flora of China Vol. 13 Page 360. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at [back]
  2. Jie Chen & Susanne S. Renner "Sonerila". in Flora of China Vol. 13 Page 361, 390. Published by Science Press (Beijing) and Missouri Botanical Garden Press. Online at [back]
Last Revised: 2015-02-04