1. Family: Fabaceae Lindl.
    1. Genus: Mucuna Adans.
      1. Mucuna globulifera T.M.Moura, N.Zamora & A.M.G.Azevedo

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Costa Rica to Colombia.


    Bernal, R., Gradstein, S.R. & Celis, M. (eds.). 2015. Catálogo de plantas y líquenes de Colombia. Instituto de Ciencias Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Bogotá. http://catalogoplantasdecolombia.unal.edu.co

    Nativa en Colombia; Alt. 90 - 700 m.; Pacífico, Valle del Magdalena.
    En Peligro

    de Moura, T.M., Zamora, N.A., Lewis, G.P. et al. 2013. Mucuna globulifera (Leguminosae: Papilionoideae), a new species from Costa Rica, Panama and Colombia. Kew Bulletin 68: 151. DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/s12225-012-9430-0

    Type: Panama, Darién, McDonagh, Lewis, Gumpel & Pumptre 514 (holotype BM!; isotype MO!).
    Liana with stems sparsely sericeous
    Leaves alternate, 3-foliolate; stipules caducous; petiole 8 – 15 cm long, cylindrical, sparsely sericeous; pulvinus cylindrical, 10 × 3 mm; rachis 2.5 – 3.5 cm long, angular, the hairs as on the petiole; stipels absent; petiolules 8 – 10 mm long, with erect hairs, these denser than on the petiole and rachis; leaflet blades ovate to elliptic, that of the apical leaflet 9.5 – 18.5 × 5.7 – 10 cm, those of the lateral leaflets 11.5 – 13.5 × 6 – 7 cm and asymmetrical, all blades obtuse or rounded at base, cuspidate at apex, the hairs appressed and sparse on both surfaces, the venation eucamptodromous, with 4 – 5 pairs of secondary veins per leaflet
    Inflorescence a terminal axillary, pendent pseudoraceme; peduncle 1 – 3 m long, with sparse appressed hairs; rachis condensed, 1 – 2.5 cm long, spirally arranged pedicels with one pedicel c. 1 mm apart from the one above; bracts 2 at the base of the primary axis of the inflorescence, caducous; secondary bracts (at the base of each node) persistent, 3 – 5 × 2.5 – 3 cm, ovate and concave (primary and secondary bracts enveloping the early inflorescence to form a globose structure); pedicels 4 – 6 cm long, 2 – 3-fasciculate on each node, sericeous
    Flowers 4 – 4.5 cm long
    Calyx bright golden-sericeous (when fresh), campanulate, with long, appressed hairs on outer and inner surfaces, 1.5 – 2 cm long; lobes 4, the adaxial one formed by two connate sepals, the abaxial one 5 – 7 mm long, the apex obtuse, the other two lobes 3 – 4 mm long, the apex acute or rounded
    Corolla generally pale salmon to whitish, whitish green (when fully mature), but also reported as cream (Gentry & Aguirre 15218, COL), or creamish yellow (Duke & Elias 13877, COL); standard 3.3 – 3.7 × 2 cm, lanceolate with an acute to retuse apex and cordate-sagittate base, the claw c. 3 – 4 mm long, glabrous; wing petals 2.7 – 3.7 × 1 cm, oblong, basally attenuate, apically rounded, pubescent at base, the claw c. 1 mm long; keel petals 4 – 4.5 × 0.7 – 1 cm, oblong, attenuate at base, obtuse at apex, pubescent at base, the claw c. 1 mm long
    Stamens 10, diadelphous, with nine stamens fused, one free; filaments 4 cm long, glabrous; anthers ovate to oblong-elliptic, basifixed, 2 – 4 mm long
    Gynoecium 4 – 4.5 cm long; ovary sessile, oblong, 8 × 2 mm, densely sericeous, 4 – 5-ovulate; style 3 – 4 cm long, densely sericeous, glabrescent at apex, the stigma peltate
    Fruit oblong, laterally compressed, (1 –) 2 – 3-seeded, 10.5 – 18.2 × 4.5 – 5.5 cm, the margin undulate between the seeds, softly villous and lacking urticating hairs; seeds discoid, black, 3 – 3.3 × 2.7 – 3.4 cm
    Figs 1 and 2.
    Mucuna globulifera is known from SW Costa Rica, Panamá (Chiriquí, Coclé and Darién provinces) and Colombia (Antioquia, Chocó and Santander departments) (Map 1).
    Mucuna globulifera occurs at an altitude of 100 – 1400 m. The species is quite common at middle elevations (c. 1200 m) of the Changuinola watershed in Parque Internacional La Amistad (Panama) and JardínBotánico Las Cruces, San Vito (Costa Rica), but is apparently rare elsewhere, although quite possibly common in areas that have yet to be explored botanically. The species colonises sunny, disturbed open areas, such as forest gaps and margins.
    According to IUCN (2001) Mucuna globulifera is an Endangered (EN) species. Although it occurs in three countries, it has an EOO of 376,970 km2, and AOO of 56 km2.
    Flowering June – Aug.; fruiting March, and July – Sept.
    Mucuna globulifera is morphologically related to other species from Central and South America that have a condensed primary axis of the inflorescence, such as: M. argyrophyllaStandl. (Standley1922: 504), M. holtonii (Kuntze) Moldenke (1933: 7) and M. mollis (Kunth) DC. (De Candolle 1825: 406). It is most similar to M. mollis based on inflorescence structure, with the internodes greatly reduced and the nodes about 1 mm apart from the one above. Nevertheless, M. globulifera has a pale salmon to cream or creamish yellow coloured corolla, leaflets with sparsely appressed hairs to almost glabrous on both surfaces, and persistent secondary bracts, these 3 – 5 × 2.5 – 3 cm in size; whereas, M. mollis has a yellow corolla, leaflets with dense, erect hairs, and 2 – 3 × 2 – 2.5 cm caducous bracts (these only seen on young inflorescences, and not when the flowers are open). M. globulifera is characterised by the extremely long peduncle and conspicuous large globose young inflorescence, with several, large and ovate-concave overlapping secondary bracts. Mucuna globulifera is equivalent to Mucuna sp. B of Zamora in the Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica (Zamora 2010). Mucuna globulifera is diagnosed by its 1 – 3 m long peduncle; a condensed primary axis of the inflorescence; bracts and bracteoles 3 – 5 × 2.5 – 3 cm; pedicels 4 – 6 cm long; flowers 4 – 4.5 cm long; corolla usually pale salmon coloured but also reported as cream or creamish yellow; wing petals shorter than keel petals; fruits densely villous, with a smooth surface (no ornamentation present). The most morphologically similar species to M. globulifera is M. mollis, which also has the internodes of the inflorescence strongly reduced (the nodes c. 1 mm apart from the one above) but M. mollis has a denser indumentum of erect hairs on the leaflet abaxial surfaces, whilst in M. globulifera the trichomes on the abaxial surface of the leaflets are appressed and sparse or the leaflets are almost glabrous. The specific epithet refers to the shape of the large and distinctly globose young inflorescences.


    Native to:

    Colombia, Costa Rica, Panamá

    Mucuna globulifera T.M.Moura, N.Zamora & A.M.G.Azevedo appears in other Kew resources:

    First published in Kew Bull. 68: 151 (2012)

    Accepted by

    • Bernal, R., Gradstein, R.S. & Celis, M. (eds.) (2016). Catálogo de plantas y líquenes de Colombia 1-2: 1-3068. Libro impreso.


    Kew Bulletin
    • Moura, T. M., Zamora, N. A., Torke, B. M., Mansano, V. F. & Tozzi, A. M. G. A. (2012). A new species of Mucuna (Leguminosae-Papilionoideae-Phaseoleae) from Costa Rica and Panama. Phytotaxa 60: 1 – 8.Google Scholar
    • Zamora, N. (2010). Fabaceae. In, B. E. Hammel, M. H. Grayum, C. Herrera & N. Zamora (eds), Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica. Vol V. Dicotiledóneas (Clusiaceae--Gunneraceae), pp. 395 – 775. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, St. Louis.Google Scholar
    • Ruiz, L. K. (2009). Sinopsis de las especiesColombianas de Mucuna (Leguminosae: Papilionoideae: Phaseoleae). In: E. Forero (ed.), EstúdiosenLeguminosasColombianas II, pp. 387 – 417. Universidade Nacional Colombiana, Bogota.Google Scholar
    • Agostini, K. (2008). Ecologia da reprodução de duasespécies de Mucuna (Leguminosae, Faboideae, Phaseoleae) — embriologia, citogenética e variabilidadegenética — do litoralnorte de São Paulo. Tese de Doutorado. Instituto de Biologia, UniversidadeEstadual de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo.Google Scholar
    • Tozzi, A. M. G. A., Agostini, K. & Sazima, M. (2005). A new species of MucunaAdans. (Leguminosae, Papilionoideae, Phaseoleae) from southeastern Brazil, with a key to Brazilian species. Taxon 54: 451 – 455.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
    • IUCN (2001). IUCN Red list categories and criteria: version 3.1. IUCN Species Survival Commission, Gland and Cambridge.Google Scholar
    • Helversen, D. von & Helversen, O. von (1999). Acoustic guide in bat-pollinated flowers. Nature 398: 759 – 760.Google Scholar
    • Moldenke, H. N. (1933). Studies of new and noteworthy tropical American plants 1. Phytologia 1: 5 – 18.Google Scholar
    • Standley, P. C. (1922). Trees and Shrubs of Mexico 2. Contr. U.S. Natl. Herb. 23: 171 – 515.Google Scholar
    • De Candolle, A. C. P. de (1825). ProdromusSystematis Naturalis RegniVegetabilis 2. Treuttel & Würtz, Paris, Strasbourg & London.Google Scholar
    Kew Backbone Distributions
    • De Moura, T.M., Lewis, G.P., Mansano, V.F. & Tozzi, A.M.G.A. (2018). A revision of the neotropical Mucuna species (Leguminosae-Papilionoideae) Phytotaxa 337: 1-65.
    • Bernal, R., Gradstein, R.S. & Celis, M. (eds.) (2016). Catálogo de plantas y líquenes de Colombia 1-2: 1-3068. Libro impreso.


    Catálogo de Plantas y Líquenes de Colombia

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Bulletin
    Kew Bulletin

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0