Ellobium

This section consists of just three diploid species distributed in evergreen cloud forest and oak-pine forest from Jalisco, Mexico, to northern Panama as terrestrial, or epiphytic or sometimes tuberous, shrubs from 1,450 to 3,400 meters in elevation. (Breedlove et al. 1982) The leaves are opposite or ternate. The flowers are axillary, or held in racemes or panicles, with elongated floral tubes from 20 to 65 mm long. Its nectaries are smooth and unlobed. The sepals are erect to spreading and colored green to reddish green or pale red with olive-green or bright red petals. The stamens occur in two unequal series and have yellow pollen. The seeds number between fifty and two hundred. The section’s breeding system is hermaphroditic.

All three species of this section are terrestrial or epiphytic shrubs characterized by overgrown tuber rhizomes.

This section’s name derives from the Greek word, ellobion, or earring. It was first applied to Fuchsia fulgens (De Candolle 1828) when the Swedish botanist, author and colorful social philosopher, Niels Lilja , established a new genus for it as Ellobium fulgens in 1841. Previously in 1840, he had moved Fuchsia fulgens into Spachia fulgens. Ellobium has been synonymous with Fuchsia, however, when Lilja was eventually corrected by Carrière in 1881. The name was revived for this section of the genus.

Dr. Paul E. Berry, the world’s leading scientific authority currently working on the genus, announced he will likely recognize two varieties as F. splendens var. splendens and F. splendens var. cordifolia in a future publication. So far he has never followed through. This means F. splendens var. splendens and F. splendens var. cordifolia are not accepted names. F. splendens is an accepted name.