Streptocarpella

Streptocarpella is a subgenus of the genus Streptocarpus*.  The flowers and seed pods are very similar to "regular" Streptocarpus, but the leaves and stems are very different .  However, they are grown in basically the same conditions- perhaps tolerating hotter conditions, and cuttings are easy.  They are sometimes called 'nodding violet'.
 
Genus (Subgenus):    
Streptocarpus (Streptocarpella) = Streptocarpella
Streptocarpus (Streptocarpus) = "regular" Streptocarpus
 
Streptocarpella are termed "caulescent", which means that they have stems (Latin caulis = stem/stalk).  Whereas, regular Streptocarpus don't really have stems.
 
Streptocarpellas generally are clump-forming or trailing plants.  When they are young, they can be upright.  Their flowers are only about 2.5-3.5cm, and their colour range seems to be limited to purple, pale pink/purple, and white.
 
Streptocarpellas and regular Streptocarpus do not interbreed. 
 
From what I have seen, Streptocarpella leaves can be decussate in arrangement (each pair of leaves at a node is at 90 degrees to the ones preceding or following it), or ternate (whorls of 3 leaves at each node).  However, I have a specimen that exhibits both on the same plant!
 
 
Close-up of ternate leaf arrangement.
 
 
Streptocarpella flower and bud
 
 
A Streptocarpella in a hanging basket
 
 
Streptocarpella stem-tip showing decussate leaf arrangement
 
 
 
 
* Studies have shown that African Violets, genetically, should be nested within the Streptocarpella subgenus. So, that just makes things messy. African Violets currently have their own genus "Saintpaulia".
 
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Anderson's Streptocarpus,
28 Oct 2011, 19:13
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