Jovellana punctata

Thanks again to Ruth for today’s write-up:

Found natively from low altitudes and the interior valleys of southern Chile (the humid matorrales or transitional woodlands), Jovellana punctata is a beautiful species in the Calceolariaceae. Its genus, Jovellana, is also found in New Zealand, displaying a wide southern hemispheric distribution.

Known in Chile as argenita or capachito, Jovellana punctata is a shrubby plant. It has large simple leaves with serrate margins. There is little research done on this species, but as a student of botany I can say that the spots on the carolla tube (fused petals) are set up as a “landing pad” for pollinators. Just like airports and rooftops use an “H” for helipads, flowers use colours and spot patterns to direct traffic. The bright yellow spots invite bees and birds to have a look inside, tricking them to spread pollen to the female parts.

The family Calceolariaceae was only recently separated from the Scrophulariaceae. It contains only two genera: Jovellana and Calceolaria.

Thanks for the second day in a row to J.G. in S.F.@Flickr for contributing an awe-inspiring photograph to BPotD (original | BPotD Flickr Group Pool)!

Jovellana punctata

15 responses to “Jovellana punctata”

  1. van

    Another adorable plant – and superb photo. Thanks for sharing these 🙂

  2. Adam Fikso

    A very nice image. In the future it would be helpful and informative to include dimensions of the flower, I’m guessing that it’s about 3/4 of an inch across, but can’t tell. Thanks.

  3. Daniel Mosquin

    Well, this is the difficulty with using other people’s photographs — we use what is provided, and if no other information is given, c’est la vie! The link to the illustration provides a bit more of a visual clue.

  4. onlyheaven

    Cute & adorable are such a simple words but completely fitting for this flower. Thanks Dan & Ruth!!

  5. deb lievens

    Lovely picture of a cool flower. I liked it even better when I read it used to be a Scroph – my favorite plant family.

  6. Dan

    Such detail – amazing.
    I’ve heard that some flower petals (like irises) have linear “nectar-guides” for pollinators, guiding them to the nectar (and pollen) deeper in the flower. What about the splotches on these and other flowers’ petals? Any theories on their function?

  7. Dan

    Oh, scratch that – my question is well-addressed in the write-up. Sorry!

  8. Scott McGillivray

    What a pleasure to be tricked by such a divine creature as this beauty…..bees are so lucky….

  9. Eric Simpson

    “The family Calceolariaceae was only recently separated from the Scrophulariaceae.”
    Oh no! Those darned splitters are at it again ;-).

  10. sheila

    We grow Jovellana punctata, with the cute little flowers. Just wish we had the ability to take such a stunning picture of it!

  11. SIU


  12. Marilyn Allen

    When I looked at this image it immediately reminded me of a photo on of Gloxinia perennis (on the website choose “G” under genera, then Gloxinia, scroll down to Gloxinia perennis) being pollinated by Euglossine bees. Goninia perennis is one of several fragrant gesneriads, this one with a spearmint fragrance. It was the colour combinations which brought the image to mind.(I should have posted it with the pollinators series).

  13. Equisetum

    Where do you live that you can grow this fascinating shrub? Does it tolerate hot dry weather?
    It is such a wonderful picture, with so many identifying characteristics clearly shown — the four -pointed calyx suggesting that the flower lobes are two joined petals, the interesting winged stamens which look to be of two (each) joined, and a pretty good view of the stigma (pollen-accepting site on the pistil, the center post that’s the visible female organ of the flower). For a bonus, a clear view of the fruit, which I’m guessing will be a double capsule with each chamber divided to make four — it’s a very four-parted flower!
    I first started photographing flowers to see if I could take pictures that would show everything clearly enough so that the flower could be identified from a photo — usually impossible and exasperating in flossy photo-illustrated field guides. (Answer: maybe sometimes…) This one is a wonderful “yes” to that question. (If in a text or guide a view of the leaf shape and placement would also be needed — that’s the easy part usually.)

  14. Mary Ann, in Toronto

    More photos, and some details, of this lovely flower can be found at

  15. Benny Shafir

    W O W !!! so cool of the most beautiful I have seen.thank’s for showing us the nature beauty.

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