Aspidistra flaviflora

Accepted name Aspidistra flaviflora K. Y. Lang & Z. Y. Zhu. Acta Phytotax. Sin., 20(4): 485, fig. 1. (1982).
Distribution China (SC Sichuan)
Description Rhizome: creeping, terete, 3 - 7 mm in diameter.

Leaves: solitary, to ca. 60 cm; cataphylls undescribed; petiole 10 - 26 cm; lamina green spotted with yellow-white, oblong-lanceolate to narrowly elliptic, 19 - 30 cm long x 3 - 6 cm wide.

Scape: 0.5 - 1.5 cm long with 1 or 2 bracts; flowers solitary, fragrant.

Perianth [Perigone]: campanulate, yellow, tinged purplish inside and whitish outside; tube 7 - 13 mm long x 5 - 7 mm diameter [see below]; lobes (5 -) 6, reflexed, lanceolate, 5 - 7 mm long x 2 - 4 mm wide, with 2 fleshy keels adaxially.

Stamens: 6, inserted proximally in perianth tube, positioned lower than stigma, subsessile, anthers elliptic, ca. 2 mm.

Pistil: obconical; style ca. 3 mm - 8 mm long, basally columnar but gradually widening into a purple 3-lobed stigma, adaxially concave, 3 - 4 mm diameter, [published drawings seem to to show two distinct forms for the adaxial surface (stigmatic surface) EITHER (item 7 below), the lobes wide spreading, very shallowly emarginate with slightly uprolled margins and 3 central radial lines, OR (item 6 below and in photograph in Li Guangzhao 2004), the lobes prominent, distinctly emarginate, the margins reddish, thickened]; ovary undescribed.

Fruit: berry ovoid, 1 - 1.5 cm in diameter, tuberculate.

Phenology: flowers September - October, fruits January - July.

2n = 38

Based on FoC & K-Y Lang & Li Guangzhao 2004

However, Tillich in his key has A. flaviflora as "perigone widely cup-shaped, diameter 13 - 18 mm, 7 - 13 mm long, pale yellow, insides reddish. Pistil 3 - 8 mm long. Anthers rounded, in lower third of tube".  It is difficult to reconcile this with the above description.

Comments The FoC states that the stigma is "slightly 3- or 6-lobed at margin" but the drawings ex K-Y Lang show a distinctly 3-lobed stigma.

The drawing of A. flaviflora ex K-Y Lang is quite distinct from Li Guangzhao.  Li Guangzhao includes as element 7 the same stigma structure as given by K-Y Lang but in elements 5 & 6 shows a different stigma structure although still 3-lobed.  The perianth tubes and particularly the lobes are also shown differently.

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last updated 18/02/2008