Flora of Barro Colorado Island

Tillandsia anceps

Lodd., Bot. Cab. 8, pl, 771. 1823 Cogollos

Epiphyte. Leaves many, equaling or exceeding inflores­cences in length, very narrowly triangular, acuminate, 15-40 cm long, 7-12 mm wide, densely and minutely appressed-lepidote, recurving; sheaths triangular-ovate, with purple stripes. Scapes erect, very short; scape bracts imbricate, mostly ovate and acute; inflorescences simple, elliptic, strongly flattened, 10-15 cm long, to 5.5 cm wide; floral bracts densely imbricate, boat-shaped, acute, to 4 cm long, as many as 20 of them fertile, each subtending a flower; flowers appearing one at a time, soon withering; sepals narrowly lanceolate, acute, ca 3 cm long, keeled; petals more than twice as long as sepals, the claw linear, white, the blade lanceolate-elliptic, blue, recurved at anthesis; stamens deeply included, exceeding the style; ovary superior. Capsules cylindrical, to 2.5 cm long, rugose outside; seeds ca 1.7 cm long, comose, the semi­niferous area ca 3 mm long, the coma fused and refolded at middle. Croat 8503, Shattuck 560.

Apparently rare, though the number of earlier collec­tions indicates possibly greater abundance. Flowers in the middle to late rainy season. The fruits mature in the dry season.

Guatemala to Colombia, Venezuela, and the Guianas; Trinidad. In Panama, known only from tropical moist forest in the Canal Zone and Darién.