Piper glabrescens

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Piper glabrescens


Shrub to 1.5-2 m tall. Stem glabrescent. Petiole 1-3.2 cm long, vaginate to apex, glabrescent; blade not scabrous, densely glandular-dotted, elliptic to ovate, 14-28 x 7-14 cm, apex acuminate, base equal or unequally attached to petiole difference 0.2 cm, (acute to) rounded, glabrous above except minutely crisp-pubescent veins, glabrescent below; pinnately veined, secondary veins 5-7 per side, originating from lower 2/3 of primary vein, slightly impressed above, prominulous below, tertiary veins more or less parallel. Inflorescence erect; peduncle to 1.5 cm long, glabrous; spike to 6 cm long, apiculate; floral bracts glabrous to papillate. Infructescence to 0.5 cm thick; fruits depressed globose or subtetragonous, 1.2 mm in diam., glabrous, glandular, stigmas 3, sessile.


Amazonian Brazil present, French Guiana present, Guyana present, Hispaniola present, Puerto Rico present, Southern America: Venezuela (Venezuela present), Terr. Roraima present, Trinidad present
Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, Venezuela, Guyana, French Guiana and Amazonian Brazil (Terr. Roraima); 35 collections studied (GU: 32; FG: 3).


Piper glabrescens (Miq.) C. DC. var. caparonum (C. DC.) Yunck. from Trinidad and Guyana was described as having pilose floral bracts, but these were not found in the Guyanan collections. Therefore I do not accept this variety for the Guianas.
Piper pseudoglabrescens is differentiated from P. glabrescens by the measures of the leaves being more than 10 cm wide, instead of less than 10 cm wide in P. pseudoglabrescens. In the description, however, the width is given as 7-14 cm. Another character used to differentiate the two taxa is the shape of the base of the leaf blade. But with the material at hand it is hard to follow the separation. One of the paratypes, A.C. Smith 3663, is studied, and it fits well in P. glabrescens, therefore P. pseudoglabrescens probably is a synonym of P. glabrescens.
For distinguishing characters with Piper perstipulare see note to the latter.