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Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

September 11, 2019 12:46 PM EDT

Description

One plant of C. pulverulentus was seen with a very young inflorescence and it had a much different look from the mature plants. The stamen on these flowers barely exceeds the labellum, the bracts do not have noticeably fibrous margins and the shape is not fusiform. Had I not seen so many of the other mature plants here I would have thought this to be Costus scaber.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

September 12, 2019 09:54 AM EDT

Description

Costus scaber is fairly common in this region, growing to about 3 meters tall and with inflorescences and flowers ranging in color from orange to yellow-green.
Sheath - 15 mm in diameter, glabrous
Ligule - 7 mm long, glabrous
Petiole - 7 mm long, glabrous
Leaves - 38 cm long by 11 cm wide, glabrous both sides except for single line of hairs on upper midrib, as is typical in this species.
Bracts - 12 mm long by 8 mm wide, pale orange to yellow with indistinct nectar callus.
Bracteole - 16 mm long
Calyx - very short 5 mm long, very shallow lobes, almost truncate
Flowers - Orange or yellow, tubular, with characteristic 60 degree bend and adaxially oriented to bracts.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

September 10, 2019 03:14 PM EDT

Description

The form of Costus pictus found here has straight, erect sheaths growing up to 1.75 meters tall with very narrow leaves and basal inflorescences. The lower parts of the sheaths have the "heiroglyphics" pattern as known for the form that it common in cultivation. None of the plants were seen in flower.
Sheath - 11 mm in diameter, glabrous
Ligule - extremely short, barely 1 mm long with stiff hairs around the margins.
Petiole - 7 mm long, glabrous
Leaves - 24 cm long by only 4.5 cm wide, glabrous both sides
Flowering scape to 75 cm long either leafless or with few leaves gathered at the base of the inflorescence.
Inflorescence - dark green
Bracts - green with inconspicuous nectar callus
Bracteole - 18 mm long
Calyx - 8 mm long, deeply lobed
Flowers - not seen

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

September 7, 2019 10:44 AM EDT

Description

This was by far the most common Costus in the region of the Rio Cangrejal. It fits best in the species C. pulverulentus, somewhat similar to the forms I have seen in Mexico and Guatemala, but completely different from the form found from Costa Rica south to Ecuador. The plants here were completely covered with thick hairs and only grew to about 1.5 meters tall - most were less than a meter tall. At the time I was here, there were very few in flower as it was an unusually dry year and right between the end of the dry season and beginning of the rainy season. This observation of a mature plant was measured and detailed.
Sheath - 8-9 mm in diameter, covered in thick hairs
Ligule - 6-8 mm long, hairy
Petiole - 4 mm long, hairy
Leaves - up to 24 cm long by 9.5 cm wide, hairy both sides
Inflorescence - terminal on leafy stem, somewhat fusiform in shape.
Bracts - orange with fibrous margins
Bracteole - 17 mm long
Calyx - 10 mm long, shallow lobes
Flowers - pale orange, with stamen only slightly exceeding the yellow closed labellum.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

September 7, 2019 06:26 AM EDT

Description

This form of C. laevis is believed to be the form that was described in 1901 as Costus splendens but later placed into synonymy with C. laevis. I saw the same form the year before in Guatemala. It is a huge plant, sometimes growing to 4-5 meters tall with large leaves. Here at Omega, the plant was 3-4 meters tall. Some plants had thick hairs on both sides of the leaves and some were totally glabrous. The ligules were only 8 mm long - much shorter than the typical Costus laevis but the petioles were 14 mm long. The leaves were very large measuring 55 cm long by 18 cm wide. A mature inflorescence was nearly 20 cm long, all green in the exposed part with a darker green nectar callus. Bracteole was 30 mm long, calyx 10 mm and deeply lobed with acute triangular lobes. The flower had yellow corolla lobes and open labellum with dark red blotches and stripes.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 21, 2019 09:09 AM EDT

Description

Costus allenii Santa Fe form
Finally on the last day we found one plant with a fresh flower in a wet area below the trail. A full set of photos and documentation of the details was completed. We now should have sufficient data to describe this as a new species.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 19, 2019 11:54 AM EDT

Description

Costus allenii Santa Fe form
This plant was found along the Chilagre trail along the Rio Santa Maria. This was the only plant found on a completely leafless basal shoot. There were many more plants of this species all along the trail but none were in flower.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 18, 2019 03:06 PM EDT

Description

Costus allenii Santa Fe form
At the national park entrance station we did find one damaged flower on one plant. Others had older inflorescences or none at all.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 18, 2019 11:59 AM EDT

Description

Costus allenii Santa Fe form
With the rainy season finally arriving this plant finally started putting up new growth. We found these plants throughout the region but for 3 days we looked did not find any with fresh flowers.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 18, 2019 10:55 AM EDT

Description

Costus allenii Santa Fe form
Many of the plants were seen with mature leaves ending in a small knob as the plant aborted growth due to the dry conditions this year.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 18, 2019 09:00 AM EDT

Description

By far the most common Costus in the area around Santa Fe de Veraguas at elevations below 800 meters is this form of Costus allenii. Dr. Paul Maas mentioned it in his 1977 additions to his monogaph. He has now proposed describing it as a new species. Due to the very dry year and late rainy season it was difficult to find this in flower, and many of the plants had aborted growth without forming an inflorescence.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 20, 2019 12:52 PM EDT

Description

Another observation was made along a trail below and opposite side of the road from the Cerro Mariposa trail. These were the only two localities I saw this species despite exploring the region for 5 days. In the past there have been several records collections in this area but I believe this species has declined here and is now quite rare, occurring only in these two localities.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 20, 2019 11:13 AM EDT

Description

There have been several collections of this plant on Cerro Mariposa (sometimes confused with Cerro Tute) and all have been determined as C. comosus, but I believe this to be a distinct and undescribed species closer to C. ricus and C. montanus than to C. comosus. This is due to the bicarinate bracteole that was observed on all plants here and the globular shape of the inflorescence with visible calyx extending often beyond the bracts. I will be completing a detailed study of the morphology and submitting some leaf tissue for the molecular phylogeny we are working on for a revision to new world Costaceae.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 20, 2019 12:41 PM EDT

Description

This plant of C. guanaiensis is a bit aberrant in having very small appendages to the bracts and would easily be confused for C. allenii were it not for the abaxially oriented flower. When I first noticed the plant I immediately recognized it as this species due to the very large hairy leaves.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 19, 2019 09:06 AM EDT

Description

This was found along the Rio Santa Maria near the beginning of the Chilagre Trail. It was incredibly tall, perhaps 6 meters, and was starting its third growth through the old lateral inflorescences, as shown by the red circles in the second photo.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 18, 2019 04:33 PM EDT

Description

This species was found in several localities in the Santa Fe area including this site and others between Altos de Piedra and Guabal as well as along the Rio Santa Maria Chilagre trail. In my opinion there is no significant distinction between C. nitidus and C. plicatus as the two species seem to be intermingled geographically and both have varying degrees of plicate leaves. I have attributed this plant to C. nitidus instead of C. plicatus because it has a white bracteole and white calyx instead of the pink color as described for C. plicatus. However, collection records in the Santa Fe area have all been determined as C. plicatus, evidently due to the strongly plicate leaves. Note the incredibly long lobed ligule in the plant from the last photos - extending to and beyond the next leaf axil up to about 6 cm!

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 18, 2019 09:11 AM EDT

Description

This common and widespread species was not especially common in the Santa Fe area, but several plants were seen. In flower it can easily be distinguished by the stamen that extends far beyond the little yello labellum and also typically by the corolla lobes that curl ourwards.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 17, 2019 08:41 AM EDT

Description

This species was found near the beginning of the Cerro Mariposa trail. The form differs somewhat from the Costa Rican plants by having red bracts (with little or no yellow and orange color) and well exposed flowers.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 17, 2019 08:20 AM EDT

Description

The form of C. laevis seen here has green bracts with a yellow corolla, and the normal red striped labellum. The species is distinguished from other similar ones by the adaxial (pointing inward) orientation of the flowers and the lack of hairs.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 16, 2019 10:47 AM EDT

Description

This species is very common in the middle elevations (500-1000 meters) on the Pacific side of Panama.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 16, 2019 07:26 AM EDT

Description

There were a few patches of this species along the road beyond Hato Chamí.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 15, 2019 01:28 PM EDT

Description

This is currently considered to be a form of the species Costus comosus but I have been studying the Panama specimens and I believe it to be a distinct and undescribed species that is close to Costus ricus and/or Costus montanus. It has the bicarinate bracteole of C. ricus and has the globular inflorescence shape with exposed calyx like C. montanus. It is now very rare in the Fortuna Area although there were several collections recorded in the 1970's.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 15, 2019 09:16 AM EDT

Description

This is probably var. macrostrobilus, common in the Fortuna area.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 15, 2019 09:04 AM EDT

Description

This species is common in the Fortuna Reserve at elevations ca 1200 meters.

Photos / Sounds

What

Spiral Gingers Genus Costus

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 15, 2019 07:29 AM EDT

Description

This was seen in 2008 at the same site and is believed to have been cultivated there, now growing wild. This phenotype has been proposed as a sp. nov. to be published when we complete the revision to new world Costus. It is closely related to C. curvibracteatus but differs by its basal inflorescence and very long yellow nectar callus among other differences.

Photos / Sounds

What

Spiral Gingers Genus Costus

Observer

selvadero

Date

July 14, 2019 01:59 PM EDT

Description

This appears to be an introgression between C. pulverulentus and C. scaber. The fibrous margins and shape of the inflo would indicate the former and the form of the flower would indicate the latter. I have seen this phenotype previously along the Rio Teribe and in the hills above Rio Bonyic in Bocas del Toro, south of Changuinola. I list it in my database with a working name of Costus 'Mongrel'

Photos / Sounds

What

Spiral Gingers Genus Costus

Observer

selvadero

Date

April 21, 2019 08:00 PM EDT

Description

This plant was not in flower but has the look of C. zingiberoides or possibly is the narrow leaf form of C. erythrothyrsus which might be described as a new species.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

April 21, 2019 07:54 PM EDT

Description

Based on the floral features (short calyx, small abaxial flower, etc) and the single line of hairs on the upper leaf midrib, this is clearly Costus scaber, but in a form quite different from the usual in the region. It has much larger leaves and a thicker sheath and altogether a more massive plant.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

April 21, 2019 07:42 PM EDT

Description

This plant fits best as C. guanaiensis but it is quite different from the form commonly found in the region, having fewer hairs and reddish colored bracts. The apex of the stamen has a somewhat unusual shape, acutely triangular. This plant form is fairly common in the forested area about midway between Tarauacá and Cruzeiro do Sul off Hwy BR364.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

selvadero

Date

April 19, 2019 07:45 AM EDT
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