Nepenthes mirabilis

Nepenthes mirabilis

Synonymy

Nepenthes mirabilis (Lour.) Druce, Rep. Bot. Soc. Exch. Club Brit. Isles: 637. 1916 sec. McPherson 2009: 817
  • Phyllamphora mirabilis Lour., Fl. Cochin. 2: 606. 1790 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
  • Nepenthes phyllamphora Willd., Sp. Pl., ed. 4, 4(2): 874. 1806 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Vietnam, near Hue, J. de Loureiro s.n. (P).
  • =Nepenthes moluccensis Oken, Allg. Naturgesch. 3(2): 1368. 1841 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
  • =Nepenthes fimbriata Blume in Mus. Bot. Lugd.-Bat. 2: 7. 1852 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Borneo, Pulau Lampei, P. Korthals s.n. (L).
  • =Nepenthes fimbriata var. leptostachya Blume in Mus. Bot. Lugd.-Bat. 2: 8. 1852 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Type: Borneo, C. Blume s.n. (L).
  • =Nepenthes macrostachya Blume in Mus. Bot. Lugd.-Bat. 2: 7. 1852 syn. sec. McPherson 20091
  • 1. Type: Sumatra, Bencoolen, not located
  • =Nepenthes phyllamphora var. platyphylla Blume in Mus. Bot. Lugd.-Bat. 2: 7. 1852 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 20012
  • 2. Type: Blume s.n. (L. n.v.) Java, Bantam, not located
  • =Nepenthes kennedyana F.Muell., Fragm. 5(pt. 37): 154. 1866 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Type: Australia, [Queensland, Cape York, near Somerset] "Ad oppidulum Somerset juxta promontorium Cape York"., Jardine s.n. (MEL).
  • =Nepenthes phyllamphora var. macrantha Hook.f. in de Candolle, Prodr. 17: 97. 1873 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Type: Borneo, Sarawak, O. Beccari s.n. (FI).
  • =Nepenthes bernaysii F.M.Bailey in Proc. Linn. Soc. NSW 5: 185. 1881 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Cape York at Bowden Park, Haskett or Beddome s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes obrieniana Linden & Rodigas in Ill. Hort. 37: 109, t. 66 (as ‘o’brieniana’). 1890 syn. sec. McPherson 20093
  • 3. Type: ?Borneo, not located
  • =Nepenthes jardinei F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 1(3): 230, t. s.n. 1897 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes albolineata F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 3(5): 355, t. 58 (as ‘albo-lineata’). 1898 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes alicae F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 3(5): 356, t. 60. 1898 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes moorei F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 3(5): 355, t. 59. 1898 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes cholmondeleyi F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 7(5): 441, t. 59. 1900 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, 5 miles S Jardine River, Cholmondeley Jardine s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes armbrustae F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 16(2): 191, t. 3. 1905 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Coen, Armbrust s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes garrawayae F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 16(2): 191, t. 4. 1905 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, between York Downs & Weipa, Garraway s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes pascoensis F.M.Bailey in Qld. Agric. J. 16(2): 190, t. 2. 1905 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Type: Australia, Queensland, Head of Pascoe River, Garraway s.n. (BRI).
  • =Nepenthes tubulosa Macfarl. in Engler, Pflanzenr. IV. 111 (Heft 36): 60. 1908 syn. sec. McPherson 2009
    • Unknown type category: Moluccas, P. Gebe, Aug 1871, Teijsmann 6759 (BO).
  • =Nepenthes phyllamphora var. pediculata Lecomte in Fl. Gén. Indo-Chine 5: 52. 1910 syn. sec. Cheek & Jebb 2001
    • Unknown type category: Laos, Champasak Prov., Sémoun Basin, Harmand 47 (P).

Description

Scrambling or climbing branched stems up to 15 m long. The lamina is oblong to lanceolate, up to 30 cm long, 8 cm wide, and is thin and papery in texture. The apex of the leaf is acute, and the base is attenuate or obtuse and petiolate, particularly in mature plants. The petiole is up to 6 cm long and clasps the stem, but may on rare occasions be decurrent. The margin of the lamina is fimbriate, fringed with narrow filaments of variable length and frequency. In Thailand, populations of N. mirabilis occur in which these filaments are 5 mm long, emerging 3 mm apart along the edge of the lamina, whereas on the Cape York Peninsula, Australia, some populations of N. mirabilis hardly have any such filaments at all (Stewart McPherson, pers. observ.). The lamina is dull green, or reddish and the stem, midrib and tendril are green, yellow or red. According to Clarke (1999), most parts of the majority of mature N. mirabilis plants are glabrous, however I have observed plants that are sparsely lined with white or light yellow, deciduous hairs up to 2 mm long (also documented by Danser, 1928), and in many populations, a tomentose ribbon may be present below the peristome (Eric Schlosser, pers. comm.).
The pitchers of N. mirabilis usually have a short lifespan in comparison to most other species of Nepenthes Generally, each trap begins to wither 8 to 10 weeks after opening. Often only the top half of each pitcher initially withers and, for many weeks, the lower half remains alive and functional, presumably to allow the plants to continue to absorb water and nutrients contained within the pitcher without the expense of sustaining an entire living trap.
The lower traps of N. mirabilis are up to 16 cm tall and 5 cm wide. The bottom third to half of the pitcher is ovate and variably swollen. Above this part, the pitcher narrows, often forming a slight hip, and becomes cylindrical towards the pitcher opening. Wings up to 7 cm wide run down in front of the trap, and are usually lined with narrow filaments up to 6 mm long, though sometimes these filaments are absent. The peristome varies little in width around the almost circular pitcher opening. The peristome is flattened or nearly cylindrical and is very variable in width. It is usually less than 8 mm wide and lined with fine ribs up to 0.1 mm high, spaced up to 0.3 mm apart. A gap up to 3 mm wide is often present at the back of the peristome, immediately below the lid. The lid is circular or ovate, up to 5 cm long and 4 cm wide, and lacks an appendage. It is usually flat or slightly dome-shaped and often does not open very far above the pitcher opening. The spur is up to 5 mm long and may be branched or unbranched.
The colouration of the lower pitcher is extremely variable across the wide range of this species. Most N. mirabilis plants produce lower pitchers in which the exterior of the trap is pure yellow-green, yellow punctuated with red or purple flecks, or suffused reddish. The interior of the pitcher is usually pale yellow or yellow-green, sometimes with red, or purple flecks. The peristome may be pure yellow, orangey or red, often with a dark purple inner margin, and the lid is most often yellow, speckled with small purple flecks on the upper surface. More rarely, the lower pitchers may be entirely blood red or dark purple. Some varieties produce pitchers with a faint orange or red band a few millimetres wide just below the peristome on the outside of the pitcher. This band is often sparsely covered with short hairs.
The upper pitchers are up to 24 cm tall and 6 cm wide, but usually much smaller. The bottom fifth to two thirds of the pitcher is ovate and variably swollen. Above this part, the pitcher narrows, often forming a slight hip, and is cylindrical or slightly infundibular towards the pitcher opening. Wings are usually reduced to narrow ridges which run down the often flattened front of the pitcher, but they may be more strongly expressed on occasion. All other parts are similar to the lower pitchers.
The colouration of the upper pitchers is also extremely variable. Most often, the exterior of the upper traps is pure yellow or yellow marked with flecks of dark red or purple. The interior of the pitcher is pale yellow or yellow-green, sometimes with red or purple flecks. The peristome may be pure yellow, orangey or red, often with a dark purple inner margin, and the lid is most often yellow, with small purple flecks on the upper surface. Rarer varieties produce upper pitchers in which the exterior of the trap is pure scarlet, but the peristome a pure, brilliant yellow. In other populations, only the lower surface of the lid may be red, or in others still, the upper pitchers may be entirely dark red or purple. Populations of N. mirabilis plants that produce red coloured upper pitchers occur sporadically across the range of this species, but are rare overall. Occasionally, variants of red pitchered N. mirabilis may be observed in which the stem is bright red too.
The inflorescence is a raceme, to 45 cm long by 3 cm at the widest point. The peduncle is up to 15 cm long and 3 mm in diameter at the base, the rachis to 30 cm long. Flowers are borne predominantly on bractless pedicels up to 15 mm long, but 2-flowered partial peduncles are sometimes found in certain populations. Tepals broadly elliptic, 4-6 mm long, and the anther head is borne on a column up to 2-5 mm long. Fruits are approximately 25 mm long.A

Notes

N. rowannae and N. mirabilis var. echinostoma, here considered as separate taxa, have been treated as synonyms of N. mirabilis by Jebb & Cheek (1997) and Cheek & Jebb (2001). B

Distribution (General)

Continental SE Asia from the S of China through Indochina to the S of Peninsular Malaysia, across the Sunda Islands to the Philippines and as far east as the Caroline Islands; Maluku Islands, New Guinea; NE of Queensland, Australia.C

Habitat

In a wide variety of habitat types, in alkaline and acidic substrates, on pure sand, clay, laterite and peat, from 0 to 1500 m, generally found below 500 m a.s.l.C

Bibliography

A. McPherson, S. R. 2009: Pitcher Plants of the Old World 1
B. Berendsohn, W.G. 2017+: Compilation of Nepenthes data for the Caryophyllales taxonomic backbone.
C. McPherson, S. R. 2009: Pitcher Plants of the Old World 2

Specimens

CountryDateCollector + collecting numberHerbariaTypeScanDerivatives
Cholmondeley Jardine s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, 5 miles S Jardine River, Cholmondeley Jardine s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes cholmondeleyi F.M.Bailey

Garraway s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, between York Downs & Weipa, Garraway s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes garrawayae F.M.Bailey

Haskett or Beddome s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Cape York at Bowden Park, Haskett or Beddome s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes bernaysii F.M.Bailey

Armbrust s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Coen, Armbrust s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes armbrustae F.M.Bailey

Garraway s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Head of Pascoe River, Garraway s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes pascoensis F.M.Bailey

Jardine s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes moorei F.M.Bailey

Jardine s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes albolineata F.M.Bailey

Jardine s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes jardinei F.M.Bailey

Jardine s.n.BRI
Citation: Australia, Queensland, Somerset, Jardine s.n.

Specimen summary: BRI
Type for: Nepenthes alicae F.M.Bailey

AustraliaJardine, J. s.n.MEL
Citation: Australia, [Queensland, Cape York, near Somerset] "Ad oppidulum Somerset juxta promontorium Cape York"., Jardine s.n.

Specimen summary: MEL
Type for: Nepenthes kennedyi Benth. Nepenthes kennedyana F.Muell.

Blume, C. L. s.n.L
Citation: Borneo, C. Blume s.n.

Specimen summary: L
Type for: Nepenthes fimbriata var. leptostachya Blume

Korthals, P.W. s.n.L
Citation: Borneo, Pulau Lampei, P. Korthals s.n.

Specimen summary: L
Type for: Nepenthes fimbriata Blume

Beccari, O. s.n.FI
Citation: Borneo, Sarawak, O. Beccari s.n.

Specimen summary: FI
Type for: Nepenthes phyllamphora var. macrantha Hook.f.

Harmand 47P
Citation: Laos, Champasak Prov., Sémoun Basin, Harmand 47.

Specimen summary: P
Unknown type category of Nepenthes phyllamphora var. pediculata Lecomte

1871-08-��Teijsmann 6759BO
Citation: Moluccas, P. Gebe, Aug 1871, Teijsmann 6759.

Specimen summary: BO
Unknown type category of Nepenthes tubulosa Macfarl.

de Loureiro, J. s.n.P
Citation: Vietnam, near Hue, J. de Loureiro s.n.

Specimen summary: P
Type for: Phyllamphora mirabilis Lour. Nepenthes phyllamphora Willd. Nepenthes mirabilis (Lour.) Druce