Thread like Opposite Oppositely Attached directly by the base, not stalked. Flower rests directly on the stem Bent or curved downward or backward Flower spikes so close together they appear to be like a head. Forming a rounded head Arranged around an axis; not opposite as in distichous Spreading like fingers in a hand and therefore there is no conspicuous main central spike. The main axis would be very short. Surfaced with small scurfy scales (trichomes) Smooth, glossy, i.e. without hairs or scales Closely and flatly pressed against Spindle shaped Frosty; covered with fine scales, hairs, dust, bloom, or the like, so as to give the appearance of frost. Sword-shaped Twisted to one side. Bent, as a knee. Terminating abruptly in a little point which is not particularly stiff. Bristle-like Overlap, like tiles on a roof.


Compiled by Derek Butcher



E1 STAMENS & STYLE Shorter than the petals. (see Fig. 3) 7
    Longer than the petals. (see Fig. 3) 2
E2 INFLORESCENCE Compound. (see Fig. 2) 4
    Simple. (see Fig. 1) 3
E3 INFLORESCENCE Wide (4 - 7 cm), swordshaped, many flowered lampropoda
    Thin (to 1 cm) almost roundish, few flowered. Flower yellow, sometimes also reddish. 3A
    Narrow, lance-like 10 - 24 cm long, petals yellow to yellowish green with appendage 3B
E3A LEAF Spreading to all sides, long filiform towards the tip. schiedeana
    Strongly bent to one side, awllike towards the tip; almost succulent schiedeana ssp. glabrior
E3B LEAF BLADE Grey-green, sparsely spotted, inflorescence erect, floral bracts purple Vriesea triangularis
    Grey-green, inflorescence pendulous. Floral bracts red 25 - 35 mm long Vriesea incurva
    Grey, inflorescence erect, floral bracts pink 45 mm long Vriesea patula
E4 FLOWER SPIKE Arranged digitally, petals yellow Vriesea patula
    Arranged thickly on the main axis, short swordlike, almost roundish, bracts close together 5
    Arranged laxly, petals cream, leaves grey 4A
    Arranged laxly, petals yellow, leaves grey-green Vriesea lubbersii
E4A LEAF With coarse grey scales, 15-20 cm long. Plant freely offsetting utriculata ssp. pringlei
    With minute pale appressed scales, to 100cm long. Plant rarely offsetting. utriculata ssp. utriculata
    Hanging, side-spikes at right angles, petals pale yellowish-green alfredo-laui
    Hanging, side-spikes almost parallel, petals yellow-green with appendage Vriesea incurva
E5A INFLORESCENCE Thick, cone shaped, green with yellow petals laui
    Not cone shaped. 5B
E5B FLORAL BRACT Densely grey scaled. scape to 55 cm long, spikes almost erect, Flower pale yellow green. roseoscapa
    Densely brown scaled, scape to 18 cm long, spikes at 45 to 70 degrees mixtecorum
    Not scaled or if any, at tip. 6
E6 PRIMARY BRACT 30 - 35 cm long. Petal yellow green carlos-hankii
    Up to 12 cm long. 6A
E6A FLORAL BRACT Wholly yellow green.Leaf sheath pale lilac kalmbacheri
    Green with top portion red. Leaf sheath dark brown. schusteri
    Simple or reduced to one flower. 8
E8 INFLORESCENCE More than one flowered. 16
    One flowered. 9
E9 PLANT Like club moss. Flower sessile, yellow bryoides
(syn. coarctata)
    Not like club moss. 10
E10 PLANT Long, filiform, hanging similar to beard moss usneoides
    Growing otherwise. 11
E11 LEAF Arranged distichously. 13
    Spiralling. 12
E12 LEAF To 2 cm long. Flower stem short or missing. Inflorescence mostly 1 flower, yellowish to brownish rectangula
    4 - 15 cm long. 12A
E12A PLANT Short stemmed. 12B
    Stemless. Inflorescence 1 flowered. Flower golden yellow. Leaf 5 - 15 cm long. aurea
E12B BRACT 2 many nerved flower stem bracts. Floral bracts smooth. Inflorescence mainly 1 - 2 flowered. Flower dirty brownish yellow. funebris
    1 Floral bract, 7 -10 nerved. 1 flowered. erecta
E13 LEAF Thin, awllike. 13A
    Thick, bent into crescent shape. 14
E13A LEAF Cross section round, leaf tip flat spatulate. Flower dirty brownish yellow. mollis
    Cross section NOT round, edges bent to form a groove, leaf tips long filiform. Flower yellow to brownish yellow 13B
E13B FLORAL BRACT Almost round. Sepals stocky with strongly developed nerves. Petals lancelike. capillaris
    Broad triangular. Sepals slender with weakly developed nerves. Petals tongueshaped virescens
E14 LEAF BLADE In cross section drawn together. gilliesii
    In cross section round. 15
E15 SEPALS Equally long, almost free. myosura
    Joined high at the back. retorta
E16 FLOWER Arranged distichously on rhachis. 19
    Arranged spirally. 17
E17 FLORAL BRACT Greenish yellow. 18
    Pink. Flower pale yellow, scented. jucunda
E18 FLOWER Strong yellow, scentless. ixioides
    Dirty yellowish brown, scented. humilis
(syn. aureobrunnea)
E19 PLANT Like club moss. tricholepis
    Not like club moss. 20
E20 LEAF Distichous. 25
    Spirally arranged. 21
E21 PLANT Stemless. 21A
    Short stem. 22
E21A LEAF BLADE Very thin, setaceous 1-2mm wide. Flowers cream. dexteri
    Not setaceous. 21B
E21B LEAF BLADE Long - to 60 cms.
Petals cream to dirty yellow during day having opened as white during previous night - Luther
    Short 25cm or less 21C
E21C PETAL Yellow. Leaf blade 15mm wide, dense grey scaled aurea
    Yellow/orange. Leaf blade 3 - 5mm wide, wavy edges, darkgreen to dark reddish brown. Racinaea crispa
E22 LEAF 26 cm long, 3 - 4 mm wide contrasting with almost black sheath Vriesea plurifolia
    10 - 18 cm long. 23
    To 5 cm long. 24
E23 FLOWER Laxly arranged on rhachis. humilis
    Densely imbricate on rhachis. lotteae
E24 LEAF The small rosette almost erect, straight. Inflorescence 4 - 16 flowered. Flower yellowish green. loliacea
    The small rosette widened, stiff,bent. Inflorescence 1 - 2 flowered. Flower dirty yellow-brown. funebris
E25 LEAF BLADE In cross section drawn together on the side. gilliesii
    In cross section round to triangular 26
E26 LEAF With large spreading scales. Flower golden yellow, strong scent crocata
    With appressed scales. 27
E27 FLOWER Greenish yellow to brownish yellow. Leaf thin, round, awllike straight. 27A
    Pale yellow. Leaf bent. 28
E27A  FLORAL BRACT Almost round. Sepals stocky, strongly nerved. Petals lancelike capillaris
    Broad triangular. Sepals slender, weakly nerved. Petals tongue shaped virescens
E28 SEPALS Equally long, almost free. myosura
    Fused high at the back. retorta
E29 STEM With stem or short stem. 30
    Stemless. 31
E30 FLOWER Arranged distichously on spike. streptocarpa
    Arranged spirally. humilis
E31 FLOWER With asymmetrical sepals.
(In Racinaea and flowers generally small)
    With symmetrical sepals. 32
E32 PLANT Bulblike at base. Leaf thin, grasslike. Inflorescence mostly erect. Flower yellow. Petal thin. disticha
    Not bulblike at base. 34
E33 Not used    
    Other Colours 36
E35 SPIKE 2 cm wide. The bottom primary bract as long as the spike. alfredo-laui
    1.4 cm wide. Primary bract always shorter than the spike. rauschii
E36 LEAF Tongue like, greenish often purple or red spotted. Petals cream to dirty yellow during day having opened as white during previous night - Luther venusta
    narrow triangular, grey 36A
E36A FLOWER Laxly arranged on the rhachis. Flower bract green. Flower yellow with brown blotches or pale yellow, scented with wide petal blade. humilis
    Densely arranged on rhachis. Floral bract green or orange. Flower cream, very small. barthlottii
E37   Arranged one way on the rhachis. 42
    Not arranged one way. 38
E38 FLOWER Laxly arranged on rhachis. 40
    Densely arranged. 39
E39 FLORAL BRACT As long as the sepals or a bit longer Racinaea spiculosa
    Shorter than sepals. Racinaea contorta
E40 FLORAL BRACT & SEPALS  With dense rough scales. Racinaea adpressa
    Pale scales to naked. 40A
E40A LEAF SHEATH With large spots. 40B
    Not spotted, or very slightly spotted 41
E40B LEAF SHEATH With large purple spots. Petals pale yellow. Racinaea aerisincola
    With dark wine-red spots. Petals yellow/orange. Racinaea crispa
was crispa v. tustii
E41 FLOWER Spreading from rhachis. Leaf sheaths not spotted. Petals very small, yellow Racinaea ropalocarpa
    Adjacent to rhachis. Leaf sheaths slightly spotted. Petals cream. Racinaea pugiformis
E42 FLOWER Upward pointing. Racinaea tetrantha
    Downward pointing. Racinaea pectinata

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