streptocarpus

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • n streptocarpus any of various plants of the genus Streptocarpus having leaves in a basal rosette and flowers like primroses
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n streptocarpus A genus of gamopetalous plants, of the order Gesneraceæ, tribe Cyrtandreæ, and subtribe Didymocarpeæ. It is characterized by flowers with an elongated corolla-tube which is much enlarged above, and contains two perfect stamens and a linear ovary imperfectly four-celled by the protrusion of lobed placentæ densely covered on their margins with ovules, and becoming a spirally twisted capsule which is linear and terete and splits into valves coherent at the base and apex. There are about 19 species, natives of South Africa and of Madagascar. They are woolly or downy herbs, chiefly with spreading radical leaves or with a single leaf (a persistent cotyledon), sometimes with a stem bearing opposite leaves. The handsome flowers are mostly pale purple or blue; they form a many-flowered cyme, or are borne few or singly upon their peduncle. S. Dunnii, a remarkable species from the Transvaal mountains, is cultivated for its peculiar solitary grayish-green leaf, prostrate on the ground and over 3 feet long, with thick fleshy veins and clothed beneath with close reddish down, and for its bright-red tubular decurved flowers, of which there are sometimes over one hundred on a scape at once. Several other species are in cultivation under glass, especially S. Watsoni, a hybrid with several large leaves and rich crimson flowers, and S. Rexii, with blue flowers. They are known as Cape primrose.
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