Arquita celendiniana (G.P.Lewis & C.E.Hughes) Gagnon, G.P.Lewis & C.E.Hughes

First published in Taxon 64: 482 (2015)
This species is accepted
The native range of this species is Peru. It grows primarily in the seasonally dry tropical biome.


Extinction risk predictions for the world's flowering plants to support their conservation (2024). Bachman, S.P., Brown, M.J.M., Leão, T.C.C., Lughadha, E.N., Walker, B.E.

Predicted extinction risk: threatened. Confidence: confident

Lewis, G.P., Hughes, C.E., Yomona, A.D. et al. 2010. Three new legumes endemic to the Marañón Valley, Perú. Kew Bulletin 65: 209. DOI:

Perú, Cajamarca, Celendín, Río Marañón Valley, km 47 rdCelendín to Balsas on slopes on W side of the valley, 22 April 2002, fl. & fr., Hughes 2210 et al. (holotypusK!; isotypi FHO!, MOL!).
Morphology General Habit
Erect herb to brittle multi-stemmed, sometimes scrambling, shrub, 0.7 – 2 m tall, woody at the base from which arise slender, green, strongly angular to tetragonal shoots that die back and resprout annually, bark of older stems smooth, grey-brown, slash greenish, stems densely covered in maroon glandular hairs and a fine puberulous, white indumentum
Morphology Leaves Stipules
Stipules lanceolate, 5 × 1.5 mm, apex needle shaped to filiform, one margin falcate, the other unevenly ragged-dentate, the outer surface with a patent white pubescent indumentum mixed with maroon stalked glandular trichomes
Morphology Leaves
Leaves bipinnate, spirally arranged, petiole 1.8 – 3.5 cm long, leaf rachis 3 – 6 cm long, covered in maroon glandular hairs, pinnae in 2 – 3 pairs per leaf, usually ending in a single pinna, but this sometimes lacking, leaflets in 4 – 7 pairs per pinna (usually only 3 – 4 pairs on the terminal pinnae), distal leaflets of the terminal pinnae obovate, 5 – 11 × 3 – 5 mm, their apices shallowly emarginate, median leaflets of the median pinnae oblong-elliptic, 6 – 12 × 3 – 6.5 mm, all leaflets somewhat fleshy, upper surface glabrous, lower surface glabrous or with a sparse pubescence at the base of the midvein to half way along it, the margins sometimes sparsely ciliate with white hairs, only the midvein evident, some leaflets, usually the basal ones, on each pinna with a crenate, or partially crenate margin, with sessile maroon (drying black) glands (of varying number per leaflet) in the shallow marginal sinuses between the crenations, either along the basal third of the margin or all way round the leaflet circumference, together with the occasional sessile gland in shallow depressions on the leaflet blade lower surface, and usually a single gland at the apex of the midvein
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence a long, lax, terminal or axillary, erect, many-flowered raceme, c- 24 – 41.5 cm long, the axis with a fine puberulous indumentum of patent white hairs intermixed with stipitate maroon glandular trichomes
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flower buds globose, the lower sepal ± cucullate and slightly longer than the other four, all sepals densely pubescent with white patent hairs; pedicel of open flower 8 mm long, articulated 1.5 mm below the calyx, pubescent with white patent hairs along its whole length, with maroon stipitate glandular trichomes intermixed, or these restricted to the point of articulation (where they are especially dense) and below; bracts lanceolate, acuminate, 3.5 – 4 × 1 – 1.5 mm, the margin fimbriate-dentate, the fimbriae gland-tipped or not, the outer surface densely pubescent with white patent hairs and maroon stipitate glands intermixed
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Calyx pale green flushed pinkish red, pubescent, with or without glandular trichomes intermixed, calyx lobes 6 – 6.5 mm long, very slightly fimbriate and glandular near the apex, the margin ciliate with white hairs, the inner surface glabrous, the outer surface moderately puberulous with white hairs and short-stalked to almost sessile maroon glands intermixed
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Corolla orange-yellow with red markings, the standard petal fringed brilliant red along the upper part of the margin, the blade broadly ovate with an acute apex, 6 × 4 mm (including a 1 mm long broad open claw), inner surface of claw moderately to densely pubescent, outer surface of whole petal glabrous and eglandular except for a pubescent claw base; upper lateral petals yellowish orange at base, reddish orange at apex, obovate, 6 × 4 mm, glabrous, eglandular, tapering towards a very short, < 0.5 mm pubescent claw; lower lateral petals slightly smaller than the upper laterals, 6 × 3 mm, otherwise identical-Stamen filaments green tinged pink, c- 5 mm long, pubescent along the lower ½ - ⅔ especially so near the base, anthers 1 × 0.5 mm
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Ovary
Ovary and base of style densely covered in stipitate glandular trichomes, these mostly maroon in colour, but those of the central portion of the ovary white to ochre, a few transparent to whitish simple hairs intermixed with the glands; style 1.5 – 2 mm long, the apex curved upwards, pubescent almost to its apex, the stigma sublateral, chambered, without evident fringing papillae
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit a lunate legume, 25 × 9 mm, coriaceous, dehiscent, the apex acute (or with a persistent style forming a 5 – 6 mm long apiculum), no calyx lobes persist around the fruit base, the valves densely covered in a mixture of simple patent white hairs and gland-tipped dendritic maroon trichomes (the stalk of the gland hairy), 3 – 4-seeded
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds olive-green to brownish, smooth, ovate to sub-elliptic, plump, c- 4.5 – 5 × 3.5 – 4 × 1 mm
Caesalpiniacelendiniana, as currently known, is restricted to the area between Celendín and Balsas in the Río Marañón Valley in the Peruvian province of Celendín, Department of Cajamarca.
Locally common in dry thorn scrub and tropical dry forest; 1250 – 1600 m. Associated taxa include Leucaena trichodes (Jacq.) Benth., Pithecellobium excelsum (Kunth) Benth., Machaerium sp., Coursetia cajamarcana Lavin, Mimosa incarum Barneby, M. ctenodes Barneby, Indigofera sp., Parkinsonia praecox (Ruiz & Pav.) Hawkins (all in the Leguminosae), Eriotheca sp. (Bombacaceae), Saccellium sp. (Boraginaceae) and species of columnar cactus.
Caesalpiniacelendiniana is known from just a small area on the west side of the Río Marañón above Balsas and, as currently known, is undoubtedly globally rare and is provisionally assigned a conservation rating of Critically Endangered (CR b1). However, given the inaccessibility of the Río Marañón valley slopes upstream and downstream of the bridge at Balsas, it remains unclear just how widespread and abundant this plant is and more precise assessment of its conservation status must await more thorough field survey.
Known to flower and fruit from November to April. Caesalpiniacelendiniana is morphologically similar to C. trichocarpa in leaf formula, leaflet glands and shared fruit indumentum and this relationship is supported by phylogenetic analyses of molecular data (Sotuyo et al., unpublished) which resolve the new species and C. trichocarpa as sister taxa. C. celendiniana differs, however, in its markedly angular stems and much longer inflorescences with many more and larger flowers. The species epithet is taken from the Province of Celendín in which Caesalpiniacelendiniana is currently considered to be endemic.


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