1. Family: Symplocaceae Desf.
    1. Genus: Symplocos Jacq.
      1. Symplocos occulta Aranha

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Brazil (Rio de Janeiro).


    Aranha Filho, J.L.M., Fritsch, P.W., Almeda, F. et al. 2013. Kew Bulletin 68: 625. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12225-013-9479-4

    Type: Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, MunicípioCapivari [Silva Jardim], May 1832, fl. fr., Riedel 272 (holotype US 1484501!).
    Shrub to tree
    Branchlets greenish yellow, not winged, sinuate in cross section, glabrous
    Leaves distributed evenly along branchlet; petiole 2 – 8 mm long, abaxially rounded, adaxially flat or concave, glabrous; leaf blade obovate to nearly elliptic, 2.5 – 5 × 1 – 2.5 cm, coriaceous, both sides glabrous, midvein slightly elevated adaxially, base attenuate or cuneate, margin entire, marginal glands present on the distal ¾, persistent or caducous, if caducous then scars visible, apex obtuse or obtuse-rounded, apical gland caducous or less often persistent
    Pedicel absent or up to 1.5 mm long; bracteoles lanceolate, deltoid, ovate or elliptic, flat or keeled, 0.6 – 1.5 × 0.2 – 0.8 mm, membranaceous, caducous or rarely persistent, glabrous, margin eciliolate or sparsely ciliolate, eglandular, apex acute or less often obtuse
    Staminate flower 2.7 – 3.5 mm long; hypanthium 0.6 – 1 mm long, funnelform, glabrous
    Calyx lobes 5, erect, ovate, broadly ovate or broadly deltoid, 0.5 – 0.7 × 0.3 – 0.7 mm, glabrous, margin entire to moderately ciliolate, eglandular, apex subacute or obtuse
    Corolla whitish, tube 0.2 – 0.3 mm long, lobes 5, slightly ascending, elliptic, ovate or obovate, 1.5 – 2 × 1 – 1.9 mm, glabrous, margin eciliolate to sparsely ciliolate
    Stamens 15 to 22, 0.4 – 2.7 mm long, filaments distinct or connate up to 0.3 mm, whitish, ± filiform, glabrous; anthers basifixed, yellowish, globose to ellipsoid, 0.3 – 0.4 × 0.3 – 0.4 mm; ovary aseptate or with 1 to 3 incomplete septa, ovules absent or notably reduced and non-fertile, style and stigma absent; disc present at ovary apex, 5-lobed or annular in transverse view, short-cylindrical in longitudinal view, 0.7 – 1 mm diam., knobby, glabrous, apex truncate
    Female inflorescence and pistillate flower unknown Male inflorescence axillary, racemose or botryoid, 3- to 17-flowered, 5 – 25 mm long; peduncle visible and not obscured by bracts, 2.5 – 22 mm long, glabrous; bracts numerous, strongly imbricate, clasping peduncle base, 0.2 – 2 × 0.4 – 1.5 mm, coriaceous to membranaceous, caducous but usually a few retained at peduncle base, glabrous, eciliolate or sparsely ciliolate, apical gland present at least in some proximal bracts, proximal bracts rotund, ovate, broadly elliptic or obovate, apex rounded, obtuse or emarginate, distal bracts elliptic, broadly elliptic or ovate, apex obtuse or acute
    Drupe ellipsoid or ovoid, 3.9 – 5.5 × 2.5 – 3.2 mm, glabrous, apex 1 – 1.5 mm in diam.; fruiting calyx lobes erect, exceeding disc, 0.2 – 0.5 × 0.5 – 0.7 mm; disc visible, rounded; endocarp 0.05 – 0.15 mm thick
    Seed sub-orbicular in cross section, 3.4 – 4.8 mm long
    Plant glabrous throughout. Leaf blade margin entire, glands or gland scars present on the distal ¾. Corolla lobes 5, ascending. Stamens in staminate flowers 15 to 22. Drupe 3.9 – 5.5 × 2.5 – 3.2 mm, fruiting calyx lobes exceeding disc.

    Symplocos occulta is characterised by its glabrous leaves and branchlets, entire leaf margin, marginal glands or gland scars present on the distal ¾, corolla with five ascending lobes, staminate flowers with 15 to 22 stamens, and the fruiting calyx lobes exceeding the disc.

    The epithet “occulta” is Latin for “hidden”, since this species was collected in 1832 and only now is described as new to science.

    According to the label on the holotype, Symplocos occulta possesses a 3-lobed corolla and an androecium with eight to ten stamens. The holotype has only a few flowers available for study, but we examined the flowers of this specimen and all were observed to have a 5-lobed corolla. We also examined eight staminate flowers, none of which exhibited < 15 stamens.

    Symplocos celastrinea Mart. can also have small leaves, but it is readily differentiated from S. occulta by its serrulate leaf margin (vs entire), leaves with indument at least when young (vs glabrous), corolla with three to four reflexed lobes (vs five ascending lobes), and staminate flowers with 8 to 16 stamens (vs 15 to 22 stamens).

    Symplocos occulta is so distinct from all other members of Symplocos sect. Hopea that it is difficult to hypothesise relationships with any other species of the section. In its small leaves with entire margins, S. occulta superficially resembles S. dasyphylla Brand. The latter, however, has eglandular leaf margins or rarely the glands or gland scars are present on the distal half (vs marginal glands or gland scars distributed on the distal ¾), its corolla has three to four reflexed lobes (vs five ascending lobes), the staminate flowers possess 6 to 11 stamens (vs 15 to 22 stamens) and the fruiting calyx lobes do not exceed the disc (vs lobes exceeding the disc).

    This species is known only from the type collection, from Silva Jardim in the state of Rio de Janeiro.
    Symplocos occulta grows in ombrophilous forest.
    During the 18th and 19th centuries, the native vegetation of Silva Jardim was intensively exploited for its timber. After this, local people cultivated mainly sugar cane and coffee until the end of the 19th century. Currently, the native vegetation of Silva Jardim is severely fragmented and has no protected status. The only exception is the ReservaBiológica de Poço das Antas, with c. 5000 ha. However, even the original vegetation of this protected area has been substantially altered by humans. Thus, we categorise Symplocos occulta as critically endangered (CR: B1ab[iii]).
    Flowering and fruiting specimens of Symplocos occulta were collected in May.


    Native to:

    Brazil Southeast

    Symplocos occulta Aranha appears in other Kew resources:

    First published in Kew Bull. 68: 631 (2013)


    Kew Bulletin
    • Aranha Filho, J. L. M. & Martins, A. B. (2011). In: A. Reis (ed), Flora IlustradaCatarinense-Simplocáceas. Herbário Barbosa Rodrigues, Itajaí.Google Scholar
    • IUCN (2010). IUCN Guidelines for using the IUCN red list categories and criteria. Version 8.1. Prepared by the Standards and Petitions Subcommittee in March 2010. .
    • Aranha Filho, J. L. M., Fritsch, P. W., Almeda, F. & Martins, A. B. (2010). Proposal to reject the name Barberinahirsuta (Symplocoshirsuta) (Symplocaceae). Taxon 59: 1287 – 1288.Google Scholar
    • Aranha Filho, J. L. M., Fritsch, P. W., Almeda, F. & Martins, A. B. (2009). Cryptic dioecy is widespread in South American species of Symplocos section Barberina (Symplocaceae). Pl. Syst. Evol. 277: 99 – 104.Google Scholar
    • Aranha Filho, J. L. M. (2008). Flora da Serra do Cipó, Minas Gerais: Symplocaceae. Bol. Bot. Univ. São Paulo 26: 69 – 77.Google Scholar
    • Fritsch, P. W., Kelly, L. M., Wang, Y., Almeda, F. & Kriebel, R. (2008). Revised infrafamilial classification of Symplocaceae based on phylogenetic data from DNA sequences and morphology. Taxon 57: 823 – 852.Google Scholar
    • Bidá, A. (1995). Revisãotaxonômica das espécies de Symplocos Jacq. (Symplocaceae) do Brasil. Unpublished PhD thesis. Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo.Google Scholar
    • Brand, A. (1901). Symplocaceae. In: A. Engler (ed), Das Pflanzenreich IV. 242, 6: 1 – 100. Wilhelm Engelmann, Leipzig.Google Scholar
    Kew Backbone Distributions
    • Forzza, R.C., Zappi, D. & Souza, V.C. (2016-continuously updated). Flora do Brasil 2020 em construção http://reflora.jbrj.gov.br/reflora/listaBrasil/ConsultaPublicaUC/ResultadoDaConsultaNovaConsulta.do.


    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