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In 1992 a new echeveria was discovered in Oaxaca, Mexico; it is published here as E. helmutiana Kimn. Also published is E. chazaroi Kimn., another new species found in 1993 at a locality only some 10 km distant from E. helmutiana. Both species belong to section Racemosae and are closely allied. They differ as follows: in E. helmutiana the leaves are highly succulent, green or reddish, non-glaucous, and with a straight smooth margin; in E. chazaroi they are only slightly succulent, bluish green, glaucous, and with an undulate, erose margin.

I. Echeveria helmutiana

On January 18, 1992, a joint expedition from the Huntington Botanical Gardens and the Uni­versity of Guadalajara was exploring in Oaxaca, Mexico. Accompanying me were Miguel Cházaro and Martín Negrete of Guadalajara and Rudi Dorsch of Houston, Texas. We were driving along the road near San Isidro Chicahuastla, in north­western Oaxaca, when I spied a small bright-red rosette on the side of the road-cut. We collected several of the plants, which resembled Echeveria mucronata, though that species had not been re­corded from Oaxaca. A little over a year later (see Part II) we stopped there again (this time without Dorsch) to examine the population more closely. Climbing up the bluff overhead we found many plants in flower, growing on rocks and the steep grass-covered slope and even on an old tree stump.

Our plants from both expeditions flowered well in California during the summers of 1993/1994 and, after further study, it became apparent that we had found a new species. The most similar of the previously known echeverias seems to be E. mucronata Schlecht., which differs in having tuberously thickened roots, green, less succulent leaves, very short pedicels, less expanded sepals, and a larger corolla (12-16 mm long) (Walther, 1972).

The new plant is named after Helmut Regnat of Ottobrunn, Germany. He has been of great assistance in my studies of Crassulaceae; besides contributing many field-annotated plants, he presented me with a photocopy of a four-volume set of original descriptions of New World Crassulaceae, many of them from obscure and nearly inaccessible publications. During 1992-1994 Herr Regnat published a seven-part survey of New World Crassulaceae in Kakteen und andere Sukkulenten, the journal of the German Cactus Society.

Attractive as Echeveria helmutiana was in habitat, in cultivation it tends to be less so, the leaves often remaining much greener. In Mexico the lower montane temperatures and the usual absence of winter rain doubtless encourage leaf-reddening, which should furnish a hint as to its proper cultivation.

Fig. 1. E. helmutiana (Kimnach et al. 3202) at the type locality, on rock with lichens, moss and pine-needles.

Echeveria helmutiana Kimn., sp. nov.

Planta glabra non glauca. Caulis plerumque minus quam 4 cm altus. Rosulae plerumque singulares 10-13 cm latae 4-8 cm altae, foliis 40-50 linearo-oblongis acuminatis acutis 4-6 cm longis 13-17 mm latis prope medium ad 4—4.5 mm crassis, viridibus vel rubris margine albo. Caulis florens racemosus 45-65 cm altus, pedunculo 25 cm longi prope basim 6-8 mm crassi prope apicem ca. 3 mm crassis, bracteis 26-46 erecto-ascendentibus obovatis 2-3.5 cm longis prope medium 6-13 mm latis, inflorescentia 20-30 cm longa, bracteis erectis incurvatis, pedicellis arcuatis, demum ascendentibus, 5-12 mm longis ca. 1 mm crassis, sepalis late expansis 5-7 mm longis ca. 2 mm latis, corolla aurantiaca 7-10 mm longa prope medium 7 mm crassa.

Plant entirely glabrous, non-glaucous. Roots not tuberous. Stem not visible between leaves, to 4 cm high or more, 12-18 mm thick. Rosettes rarely caespitose, 10-13 cm wide and 4-8 cm high; leaves 40-50, linear-oblong or slightly obovate, abruptly acuminate, acute, the apex often directed slightly to one side or often recurving, slightly concave on upper face near apex, oth­erwise convex on both faces, 4-6 cm long, 13-17 mm wide, to 4-5.5 mm thick at middle, some­what thinner near each end, olive green or more or less suffused with red, sometimes entirely red, more or less shiny, the margin rather sharp, smooth, with a 0.5-1 mm wide translucent white band along each side.

Fig. 2. E. helmutiana (Kimnach et al. 3202) in cultivation

Flowering stems 45-65 cm high or more; pe­duncle 25 cm long, 6-8 mm thick near base, ca. 5 mm thick under lowest flower, reddish green, with 26-46 bracts that are ascending to erect, ca. 1-3 cm apart, obovate, minutely cuspidate, 2-3.5 cm long, 4-8 mm wide near base, 6-13 mm wide at widest part, 2-3 mm thick, slightly con­vex to flat on both faces, obscurely keeled on lower face, with a whitish spur at base ca. 1.5 mm long and curving away from the rachis, ol­ive-green tinged reddish, shiny; inflorescence racemose, 20-30 cm long, the rachis tapering to 3 mm thick near apex, redder than the peduncle, with 20-30 or more sharply ascending to erect, incurving, linear-obovate bracts 9-18 mm long, 3-4 mm wide, ca. 1.5 mm thick; pedicels of flow­er buds ascending, on open flowers arching or at right angles to rachis, on closed flowers ascending again, 5-12 mm long, ca. 1 mm thick, with two linear-ovate, acute bracteoles 1.5-2.5 mm long; calyx with disc ca. 4 mm wide, the lobes as­cending to erect, slightly incurving, oblong-ovate, subobtuse, minutely cuspidate, unequal, 5-7 mm long, ca. 2 mm wide at middle, colored like leaves; corolla barrel-shaped, opening ca. 4 mm, 7-10 mm long, 7 mm thick at middle; petals erect to slightly incurving at apex, ovate-oblong, subob­tuse, ca. 4 mm wide at middle, the inner face concave, yellowish orange on basal half, orange on apical half, the outer face obtusely keeled, orange; filaments yellow, ca. 0.5 mm wide on basal half, the antesepalous 2.5-5 mm long, the antipetalous 2-3 mm long, the anthers ca. 1 mm long, 0.66 mm wide, yellow; gynoecium oblately hemispherical, ca. 3 mm high and 5 mm wide, the carpels erect, greenish cream, the styles ca. 1 mm long, brownish red, the stigmas purplish brown; nectaries relatively large, 2 mm wide, ca. 1 mm thick, cream.

MEXICO. Oaxaca: Dist. Juxtlahuaca: near San lsidro Chicahuastla (ca. 17°12'N, 97°52'W), 7700' alt., Jan. 18, 1992, M. Kimnach (#3202), M. Cházaro, R. Dorsch. & M. Negrete (HNT, ho-lotype; GUAD, MEXU, isotypes); same, Feb. 5, 1993, M. Kimnach (#3323), M. Cházaro, & M. Negrete (HNT, paratype).

Fig. 3. E. chazaroi (3327) at the type locality.

II. Echeveria chazaroi

In February 1993, about a year after finding E. helmutiana. we were once again in Oaxaca and revisited San Isidro Chicahuastla to examine more plants of this species. On Feb. 5 we reg­istered at a hotel in the small village of Juxtlahuaca, some 5 miles to the northwest, and there unexpectedly encountered two botanical friends of Miguel's: Ismael Calzada and Alvaro Campos, who were collecting herbarium specimens for the University of Mexico. They were planning to spend the next day collecting to the west along the road to San Martín Peras, and we decided to join them.

That day had been market day in Juxtlahuaca, a colorful sight indeed, with fruits, vegetables, fresh fish from the Pacific, hardware, clothing and a multitude of other goods displayed in the inevitable central park and on adjacent streets. There was a wonderful confusion of women bar­gaining with sellers, playing children, dogs cir­cling us suspiciously, young couples walking arm in arm, all accompanied by music from tape ven­dors. As dusk approached, the sellers and buyers dispersed and their place was taken by the usual swarms of grackles returning from their foraging in the countryside. They settled into ficus trees in the park, whistling and squawking, noisily contending for the best perches.

Early the next day we drove our two vehicles southward along the paved highway, then to the west on the dirt road through San Sebastián Tecomaxtlahuaca. Near San Martín Duraznos we found Villadia ramosissima (Reid Moran tells me that this is better considered a synonym of V. albiflora) and, a little farther, Alvaro found Sedum hemsleyanum and S. quevae. Limestone was much in evidence and I therefore hoped to find Echeveria subcorymbosa (Kimnach & Mor­an, 1994), whose type locality was just north of Juxtlahuaca, but we did not see it that day.

Unfortunately our odometer was broken and we could not accurately record localities, so I can only say that a few kilometers beyond, well be­fore the tumoff to San Martín Peras, at about 6500' altitude and just out of the limestone area, small echeverias suddenly appeared on the side of the steep road-cut. Although not in flower, they appeared to be E. megacalyx, a species widespread in Oaxaca but usually at higher al­titudes. Outside of a colorful, locally common echeveria that has since proved to be E. fulgens Lem., nothing else crassulaceous was found that day.

In May several of the echeverias resembling E. megacalyx bloomed at the Huntington. Clear­ly they had nothing to do with that species, al­though they too belonged to series Racemosae and had leaves that were superficially similar in shape and color; however, their pedicels were thin, long and recurving, the sepals deltoid, small and expanding, and the petals pinkish orange. Another new species must now be added to the rich crassulaceous flora of Oaxaca.

It is named after Miguel Cházaro, my com­panion on the 1992 and 1993 expeditions and a correspondent for some time before that. His father's ancestry was Hungarian, his name hav­ing been subsequently Mexicanized in its spell­ing. It is accented on the first syllable, so the specific name should be pronounced CHAZ-a-roi. One of Miguel's major interests is mistletoes, of which he has discovered more than one new species. He is also much involved in the study of Mexican Crassulaceae and has published several papers on them in this journal and in that of the Mexican Cactus and Succulent Society.

Fig. 4. E. chazaroi (3327) in cultivation.

Echeveria chazaroi Kimn., sp. nov.

Planta glabra. Caulis plerumque minus quam 5 cm altus. Rosulae plerumque singulares 6-8 cm diam., foliis 20-40 obovatis profunde concavis 3-5 cm longis, prope medium 1.5-2 cm latis prope basim 6-10 mm latis, 1-3 mm crassi, caeruleo-viridis, rubellis prope basim, leviter glaucis, margine undulato-eroso virido-albo. Caulis florens racemosus (30-)45(-50) cm longus ca. 4 mm crassus prope basim 2-3 mm crassus prope apicem brunneo-magenteus, pedunculo 20-25 cm longi, bracteis ca. 17 ascendentibus obovatis vel obovato-oblongis, inflorescentia 15-30 cm longa, bracteis erecto-incurvis anguste obovatis 10-15 mm longis 4-5 mm latis, pedicellis arcuatis 2-6 mm longis ca. 1 mm crassis rubellis, sepalis late expansis 3-5 mm longis ad ca. 1.5 mm latis, corolla 7-9 mm longa 5-6 mm crassa prope basim, petalis leviter recurvatis ad apicem.

Plant entirely glabrous, usually single, nearly stemless. Rosette 4-7 cm tall, 6-8 cm wide, with 20-40 leaves. Stem to 3 cm tall or more, 8-12 mm thick. Younger leaves nearly erect, diverging from central axis by only 1-3 cm, older leaves at right angles to stem or slightly reflexed; leaf-shape obovate, sometimes cuspidate but more often not, deeply concave on upper face, strongly convex and inconspicuously keeled on lower face, in side view sigmoid with apical 1-2 cm slightly recurving, 3-5 cm long, 1.5-2 cm wide at widest part 1-1.5 cm below apex, 6-10 mm wide at base, the margins weakly to strongly erose and mi­nutely undulate and forming a light blue-green band 1.5-2 mm wide, remainder of leaf darker bluish green, slightly glaucous, reddish near base.

Flowering stem usually single, erect to leaning, racemose, (30-)45(-50) cm long or more; pe­duncle ca. 20-25 cm long, ca. 4 mm thick near base, 3 mm thick just below lowest flower, brownish magenta, slightly glaucous, with ca. 17 bracts that are spaced ca. 1-1.5 cm apart, ascending-expanding, the lower ones obovate to obovate-oblong, the upper ones obovate, with a basal spur 1-2 mm long, all resembling the leaves in being variably undulate, erose and with a white marginal zone, 2-3 cm long, 6-9 mm wide, col­ored as the leaves but somewhat reddened apically and along margins; inflorescence 15-30 cm long, the rachis 2-3 mm thick, colored like the peduncle, the bracts erect, the apices incurving, narrowly obovate, 10-15 mm long, 4-5 mm wide; pedicels equilaterally inserted on rachis but curv­ing toward the light, at right angles to rachis or downcurving, 2-6 mm long, ca. 1 mm thick, red­dish, each with 2 minute linear acute bracteoles 1.5-2 mm long and less than 0.5 mm wide; flow­ers single, usually directed downwards at a 45° angle; calyx disk ca. 3 mm wide, the lobes ex­panding nearly to a right angle, ovate-oblong, acute, minutely cuspidate, convex on both sides, almost equal, 3-5 mm long, ca. 1.5 mm wide near base, ca. 1 mm thick near middle, bluish grey, slightly reddened along margins and at apex; corolla usually directed downwards at a 45° an­gle, 7-9 mm long, 5-6 mm thick near base, 4-5 mm thick just below apex, recurving slightly at apex, the opening ca. 4 mm wide, salmon pink and slightly glaucous on exterior, pinkish yellow within, the petals oblong, briefly acuminate, sub-acute, 3-3.5 mm wide at middle, obscurely keeled on outer face; filaments ca. 0.25 mm thick on basal half, light yellow, the antesepalous 5 mm long, the antipetalous ca. 3 mm long, the anthers oblong, ca. 1 mm long and 0.5 mm wide, yellow; gynoecium ca. 4 mm long, 3-4 mm thick at wid­est part, the carpels erect, light yellow, the styles 1-1.5 mm long, light green, the stigmas darker green; nectaries ca. 1.25 mm wide, pinkish yel­low.

MEXICO. Oaxaca: Dist. Juxtlahuaca: between 10 and 14 km SW of San Sebastián Tecomaxtlahuaca, along the road between San Martín Duraznos and the turnoff to San Martín Peras, ca. 6400', Feb. 6, 1993, M. Kimnach (#3327), M. Cházaro & M. Negrete (HNT, holotype; MEXU, isotype).

Fig. 5. Inflorescence of E. helmutiana (3323).

Fig. 6. Inflorescence of E. chazaroi (3327). Photos by author.

III. Relationships

These two new echeverias are being published together because they seem closely allied, judging from their flowering parts. Their leaves, how­ever, are very different: in E. helmutiana they are highly succulent and green or strongly red­dened. In E. chazaroi they are much less suc­culent and more closely resemble those of E. megacalyx: more or less crispate along the mar­gins, bluish green, and with a translucent, mi­nutely erose, whitish border. Whether intergrades exist is unknown, but it is not likely: although the mountains on which they grow are only some five miles apart, they are separated by flat valleys where no echeverias would likely occur. The two species probably had a common origin, but during their geographic isolation evo­lutionary changes have taken place, primarily in their leaves. A similar case is E. subcorymbosa, where two forms with somewhat different leaves grow in separate colonies about five miles apart. In the case of the two species described here, their leaf differences are much greater and they are therefore being published as separate species. Both of the new species have unusually small, long-pedicelled flowers with widely expanding sepals, but the most distinctive shared character is the nearly erect, incurved, narrow inflores­cence bract that subtends each pedicel (Figs. 5, 6); such bracts have not been observed elsewhere in the Racemosae.

The following table outlines the differences between the two species, based on observation of some six clones of each.


These two new species were collected under a permit from the Mexican permit office, SEDESOL, issued to the Huntington Botanical Gar­dens. In habitat the non-flowering plants were believed to be species listed under the permit. After bringing them into flower in cultivation they were found to be previously undescribed.


I invariably submit my crassulaceous articles to Reid Moran and Charles Uhl, who made helpful comments concerning this paper. The 1992 expedition was funded by the Huntington Botanical Gardens and by Rudi Dorsch of Houston, Texas.


Kimnach, M., and R. Moran. 1994. Echeveria subcorymbosa, a new species from Oaxaca. Cact. Succ. J. (U.S.A.) 66: 11-15.

Walther, E. 1972. Echeveria. Calif. Academy of Sci­ences, San Francisco.

© Cactus & Succulent Journal of America, 1995