This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
Erect climbing or prostrate herbs with hispid stinging hairs. Leaves alternate or opposite, simple or compound. Petals 5, hooded, spreading or erect, con-nivent, alternating with the same number of scales, having 2 or 3 bristles on the back, and an appendage at the base. Stamens in phalanges opposite the petals, staminodes filiform, two opposite each scale. Capsule 1-celled, 3- to 5-valved, rarely twisted; seeds numerous. There are about fifty species, all South American. Named in honour of a Spanish botanist.
1. L. aurantiaca, syn. Caiophora laterltia. - A perennial of climbing habit with elegantly lobed leaves and orange and brick-red solitary flowers of very curious structure. The only objection to this and allied species is the presence of stinging hairs on all parts of the plant, which are equally painful with those of the common Nettle. A native of Chili, usually treated as an annual.
L. acanthifolia, syn. L. Placei, has yellow and red flowers and handsome foliage; L. picta, yellow and white; L. tricolor, yellow and red; and L. Pentlandica, white tipped with orange. Blumenbachia insignis. - An allied plant in which the capsule splits to the base into 10 valves. Leaves opposite, pinna-tifid. Flowers axillary, on long peduncles, pure white, about an inch in diameter.