Sciaphyllum, genus novum Acanthacearum
Recueil des travaux botaniques néerlandais , Volume 37 - Issue 2 p. 293- 300
Among the Acanthaceae grown in the glasshouses of the University Botanic Garden, Utrecht, a plant labelled Aphelandra velutina drew my attention, first, because it obviously belonged to an entirely different genus, and secondly, because a description under this name could nowhere be found1). The coincidence of these two grounds for bewilderment might be explained by assuming that Aphelandra was merely a perversion, probably caused by the inadvertency of a transcriber, of the true generic name. This sounded plausible enough, but the name itself could not be found, for all attempts to refer the plant to one of the existing genera failed. It looked as if the plant might have been described somewhere, but for the time being there was no indication at all as to the whereabouts of this description. A clue to the origin of the name was obtained some time afterwards when I found in the Utrecht herbarium a specimen belonging to the same species which was labelled Eranthemum velutinum: the specific epithet, therefore, was the same, but the generic name was different and, as I will show presently, nearer to the mark. The specimen, which dated from 1922, had been collected by the roadside in the Buitenzorg suburb Kotta Paris, and had apparently been named by an official of the Buitenzorg Botanic Gardens. It is, however, certainly no native Javanese plant, for the flora of Java, and particularly that of Buitenzorg, is well known, and a rather conspicuous plant like this one could not have escaped the attention: it was obviously a runaway from one of the neighbouring gardens.
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