Cecarria Barlow

1 species of New Guinea, Philippines, New Britain, Solomon Islands

1 species recorded from New Guinea. Click on a name to go to its species page

  1. C. obtusifolia (Merr.) Barlow. New Guinea


Description (Barlow 1974)

Cecarria Barlow in Barlow and Wiens, Brittonia 25: 28, 34 (1973). Type Species.- Cecarria obtusifolia (Merr.) Barlow.

Aerial stein-parasitic shrubs with opposite curvinerved leaves. Inflorescence an axillary simple 2-flowered umbel (rarely produced into a 4-flowered simple raceme or spike); bracts solitary under each flower. Corolla 6-inerous; petals in the open flower separating to the base. Stamens nearly equal; anthers dorsifixed, versatile. Style articulate very close to the base. Basic Chromosome Number.- x = 9.

A monotypic genus with a disjunct, sporadic occurrence from the Philippines to Bougainville. The genus has an anomalous position in the family, and for a better understanding of its relationships, critical studies of its floral anatomy are necessary. The two species here united in synonymy and placed in Cecarria were originally described as species of Phrygilanthus. They were later transferred to Muellerina by Barlow (1962) when the heterogeneity of Phrygilanthus as then circumscribed became apparent. (For an account of the relationships and taxonomy of the species of Phrygilanthus sens. lat., see Barlow and Wiens 1973.) Cecarria is here distinguished from Muellerina on the basis of its 6-merous, actinomorphic flowers, which are also much shorter than those of Muellerina, and its nearly equal stamens. A further significant difference is the chromosome number; Cecarria, with x = 9, is the only genus of Loranthaceae with versatile anthers to have this number. The other members of Phrygilanthus sens. lat. have x = 12, x = 11 (including Muellerina), x = 10 or x 8. The basic number x = 9 is otherwise characteristic of the Old World Lorantheae with basifixed anthers, and Cecarria is perhaps an unspecialized relic genus near the stem of this Old World line.

The genus is named in honour of Cedric Erroll Carr, who was born in 1892 in New Zealand, worked and made botanical collections in Malaya, Sumatra and Borneo in 1932-33, and collected in Papua in 1935-36. He died of malaria in Port Moresby in 1936.

Updated 28 June 2003