Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Polygala paniculata

L., Syst. Nat. ed.10,1154.1759

Annual herb, to 50 cm tall, usually branched many times; stems densely and minutely stalked-glandular. Leaves short-petiolate; blades mostly linear-lanceolate, acute, to 3.2 cm long and 3.5 mm wide; vein 1. Racemes long, slender, terminal or upper-axillary, 3-7 mm long; flowers red-violet, pedicellate, 2-2.5 mm long; sepals 5, the outer 3 minute, green or tinged with white or red-violet, the inner 2 equaling petals, red-violet, oblong, rounded at apex; petals 3, the upper 2 white, ± connate laterally and enfolding the lower petal, the lower petal keel-­shaped, crested, enclosing stamens and style, the crest 6-10-lobed, the lobes often tinged with red-violet; sta­mens 8, arranged in a fan-shaped pattern within the lower petal; filaments connate nearly to apex; ovary obo­void to orbicular, 0.6-0.8 mm long; style curved, flat­tened, recessed among stamens; stigmas 2, widely spaced, on either end of the staminal cluster. Capsules ± oblong, 1.8-2.6 mm long, 2-valued; seeds oblong, to 1.8 mm long, black, densely erect-pubescent, arillate at base, the aril slender, bilobed, more than one-third as long as seed. Croat 11988.

Seasonally frequent in clearings. Flowers and fruits principally in the rainy season.

Pantropic weed. Throughout Panama in weedy situa­tions in tropical dry, tropical moist, tropical wet, and premontane wet forests; known from the Canal Zone, Bocas del Toro, Colón, San Blas, Chiriqui, Herrera, Coclé, Panama, and Darién.

See Fig. 313.