Ruellia saccata

Hey! The Saccate Ruellia! What more do you need to know? CHECK OUT THAT COROLLA NECTAR POUCH. I’d spread that goo on my toast, for sure.

Ruellia saccata was discovered by colleague Alexander Schmidt-Lebuhn during his extensive fieldwork in Bolivia while working on his dissertation. He found it in the Rurrenabaque region: SPECIAL FOR ACANTHACEAE. Alexander was kind enough to involve me in dialog on this curious new entity. But not much of it (dialogue) was required: his collection was certainly representative of a new species.

Ruellia saccata is happily at home in the Physiruellia clade. Ever a doubt? Check the hygroscopic trichomes on the seeds… they are restricted to the margins.

Wild collected, Bolivia, Schmidt-Lebuhn #60 (LPB)

Update (Sep 2016): Saw this species in Pre-Andean Amazonian wet forest in Bolivia, September 2016. Great to finally see it in the wild after assisting with its species description and publication. As beautiful up close as in the photos! Note the wonderful combination of contrasting purple and red floral parts. Only the second known collection of this species also from the Rurrenabaque area. This time collected on steep slopes of a beautiful drainage in the mountains.

Wild collected, Bolivia, Tripp et al. #5992 (COLO); Photos by Manuel Luján; Blog post by Dina Clark

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