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Stephania kwangsiensis

Description from Flora of China

Herbaceous and deciduous vines, sometimes with old stems slightly woody at base. Branches terete, longitudinally striate, glabrous, 2-3 mm in diam. Petiole 4-9 cm, twining at base; leaf blade triangular-rounded to rotund, length and width subequal, 5-12 cm or slightly longer, papery, abaxially greenish white, when dry becoming purplish red or sometimes purplish black, adaxially dark green when fresh, both surfaces glabrous, margin entire or horned serrate, palmately 10- or 11-veined, reticulation slightly conspicuous. Inflorescences compound umbelliform cymes, axillary. Male peduncle 2-7 cm; umbellet pedicels 6-10, 0.5-2 cm; cymelets many, cymosely condensed close to terminal of umbellet pedicel. Male flowers: sepals 6 in 2 whorls, light green, outer whorl spatulate-oblanceolate or obovate, 1.5-1.6 × 0.4-0.6 mm, inner whorl broadly ovate, 1.2-1.5 mm, abaxially densely papillate, with 2 large glands inside; synandrium 0.7-1 mm, anthers 4. Female inflorescences relatively stout; umbellet pedicel short, 3-4 mm. Female flowers: sepal 1(or 2), subovate, ca. 0.3 mm; petals 2(or 3), broadly ovate or broadly ovate-rounded, 0.4-0.8 mm; carpel glabrous. Drupes red; endocarp obovoid, 5-6 × 4-5.5 mm. Fl. May.

The tuberous roots contain a large amount of the alkaloid rotundine.

An unpublished IUCN report listed this species as vulnerable: VU(A1c,2c;B2c).

● Limestone mountains. Guangxi, SE Yunnan.


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