2. Firmiana Marsili, Saggi Sci. Lett. Accad. Padova. 1: 115. 1786. [For Carlo Giuseppe, Conte di Firmian, 1717–1782, Austrian statesman and Governor-General of Lombardy].
Laurence J. Dorr
Trees [shrubs], deciduous. Leaves: stipules caducous; blade usually lobed, base often cordate, palmately 5–7-veined. Flowers unisexual or rarely bisexual (plants monoecious or polygamous); sepals 5, ± connate into tube. Staminate flowers: stamens [10–]15; anthers shortly stipitate or sessile, 2-celled, dehiscing longitudinally; pistillode present. Pistillate flowers: ovary 5-locular, pyriform [ovoid or globose], base ringed with [10–]15 indehiscent anthers; ovules 2–6 per locule; styles 5, basally connate; stigmas 5. Follicles stipitate, chartaceous, foliaceous, dehiscent long before maturity and exposing seeds adhering to margins. Seeds globose, smooth, wrinkled when dry, glabrous; endosperm abundant; embryo straight. x = 10.
Species ca. 12 (1 in the flora): introduced; Asia, Pacific Islands.
A. J. G. H. Kostermans (1954, 1956, 1957) used follicle dehiscence to separate Firmiana from the closely related Hildegardia; follicles are dehiscent in the former and indehiscent in the latter. However, molecular evidence suggests that fruit dehiscence is not a defining generic character and it now appears that the species of Firmiana and Hildegardia with deeply lobed calyces form a clade (P. Wilkie et al. 2006). This would tend to support the practice in some Asian floras of recognizing the species of Firmiana with infundibuliform calyces as Erythropsis Lindley ex Schott & Endlicher. Although generic boundaries are poorly defined, and with better molecular sampling probably will change, Firmiana is the oldest generic name available for these three related taxa and likely will continue to be applied to the species found in our flora.
SELECTED REFERENCES Kostermans, A. J. G. H. 1956. The genus Firmiana Marsili (Stercul.). Pengum. Balai Besar Penjel. Kehut. Indonesia 54: 3–33. Kostermans, A. J. G. H. 1957. The genus Firmiana Marsili (Sterculiaceae). Reinwardtia 4: 281–310. Kostermans, A. J. G. H. 1989. Notes on Firmiana Marsili (Sterculiaceae). Blumea 34: 117–118. Ridley, H. N. 1934. Firmiana and Erythropsis. Bull. Misc. Inform. Kew 1934: 214–217.