Full name and orig. publication: Paradrymonia Hanst., Linnaea 26: 180, 207 (April 1854, "1853"). 

Etymology: From the Greek παρα, para = beside, alongside, close by, near, and the generic name Drymonia.

Synonyms: Trichodrymonia Oerst. (1858), Episcia Mart. sect. Paradrymonia (Hanst.) Leeuwenb. (1958).

Infrafamilial position: Gesnerioid Gesneriaceae (Gesnerioideae) - Episcieae.

Description: Epiphytic suffrutescent subshrubs or vines, terrestrial herbs or subshrubs, mostly of the form of tank bromeliads. Stems erect, ascending, or scrambling, often succulent. Leaves iso- to strongly anisophyllous (sometimes in a single colony of a species), often (in the terrestrial species) crowded and forming a rosette, usually large and surpassing the short stem, usually lanceolate, membranous to fleshy. Inflorescences axillary, usually congested, many-flowered cymes, rarely exceeding the length of the petiole, flowers often in a compact cluster at the ground or hidden by the leaves. Sepals free, linear or lanceolate. Corolla white or yellow with red or purple spots or lines, funnelform or trumpet-shaped, spurred at the base. Stamens 4, included; anthers coherent; dehiscing by a longitudinal slit. Nectary of 1 or 2 glands. Ovary superior. Fruit a bivalved capsule. 

Chromosome number: 2n = 18.

Species number: Over 70.

Species names (incl. publication and synonyms): See Skog, L.E. & J.K. Boggan. 2005: World checklist of Gesneriaceae:

Type species: Paradrymonia glabra (Benth.) Hanst. = P. ciliosa (Mart.) Wiehler 

Distribution: Throughout the neotropics except SE Brasil, the centre of diversity is Colombia.

Ecology: Growing epiphytically or as a terrestrial on damp rocks in forests.

Notes: Pollination is probably by euglossine bees, in some species presumably by hummingbirds. 

Selected references: Wiehler, Selbyana 5: 45-59 (1978), emend. & rev.; Skog, Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 65: 964-973 (1979), reg. rev. (Panama); Chautems in Ribeiro et al., Fl. Res. Ducke (1999), reg. rev.; Feuillet & Steyermark, Fl. Venezuel. Guayana 5 (1999), reg. rev.; Skog, Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 85: 1114-1128 (2001), reg. rev. (Nicaragua).

Bibliography: See Skog, L.E. & J.K. Boggan. 2005. Bibliography of the Gesneriaceae. 2nd edition:


Paradrymonia ciliosa (Mart.) Wiehler [= P. glabra (Benth.) Hanst., type]

Left: Bot. Mag. t. 4552 (1850), as P. glabra
Plant of the week, Smithsonian Institution, 
phot. L. Brothers,

Paradrymonia gigantea Wiehler

Cult. Marie Selby BG, phot. A. Weber (1982)

Paradrymonia hypocyrta Wiehler

Left and right: cult. BG Vienna, phot. A. Weber (1987)

Paradrymonia hypocyrta Wiehler

Cult AGGS show, phot. A. Chautems

Paradrymonia pedunculata L.E.Skog

Cult. Gesneriad Research Foundation (GRF), Sarasota, FL, as Rhoogeton panamensis Wiehler, phot. A. Weber (1982)


last modified: 2007-07-05