14. Comarostaphylis Zuccarini, Abh. Math.-Phys. Cl. Königl. Bayer. Akad. Wiss. 2: 331. 1837.
[Greek komaros, arbutus, and staphyle, cluster of grapes, alluding to resemblance of fruit clusters to those of Arbutus unedo] [Greek komaros, arbutus, and staphyle, cluster of grapes, alluding to resemblance of fruit clusters to those of Arbutus unedo]
George M. Diggs Jr.
Arctostaphylos Adanson sect. Comarostaphylis (Zuccarini) A. Gray; Arctostaphylos subg. Comarostaphylis (Zuccarini) A. Gray
Shrubs or trees, burled, (capable of sprouting after fire); bark gray to reddish, peeling to shredding [flaking, exfoliating, sometimes in patches]. Stems usually erect to spreading, rarely trailing or mat-forming, branching, glabrous or densely hairy. Leaves persistent [rarely facultatively drought-deciduous], bifacial; blade narrowly ovate to ovate or elliptic to obovate or broadly ovate, coriaceous, margins usually serrate to serrulate, rarely subentire, plane or revolute, abaxial surface usually densely gray-tomentose, rarely subglabrous, adaxial (green, shining), usually glabrous, sometimes hairy along midvein. Inflorescences racemes [panicles], solitary or clustered, 5-30-flowered. Flowers bisexual; sepals (drying) persistent, (4-)5, distinct or slightly connate, narrowly triangular to subulate or nearly acicular; petals (4-)5, (imbricate), connate for 3/4+ their lengths, white [greenish white, pale yellow, pink, or red], corolla cylindric to nearly globose; stamens 10, included; filaments dilated near base; anthers with 2 dorsal awns, dehiscent by 2 slits 1/4-1/2 as long as anthers; ovary 5-locular, (papillate); stigma slightly capitate. Drupes red [nearly black to dark purple], globose, juicy, warty, granular, or papillate (with multicellular papillae radiating ± perpendicularly outward); pyrenes 5, connate into solid, thick-walled, stonelike, globose endocarp. Seeds 5, connate. x = 13.
Species 10 (1 in the flora): California, Mexico, Central America.
SELECTED REFERENCES Diggs, G. M. 1987. Numerical systematics of Comarostaphylis (Arbuteae, Ericaceae). Syst. Bot. 12: 586-600. Diggs, G. M. 1995. Comarostaphylis. In: Organization for Flora Neotropica. 1968+. Flora Neotropica. 98+ nos. New York. No. 66, pp. 146-193.