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Weedy shrub of forest clearings, thickets, pastures, roadsides, coffee plantations, ravines, streamsides and perhaps within the forest itself. At moderate altitudes, ranging from 800 to 2400 m, but most collections from between 1200 and 2000 m, in rainforest, cloud forest or oak-pine (only in northern Central America) zones. In the Cordillera from southern Mexico to Peru and easterwards through Venezuela to Trinidad, also in eastern Brazil and eastern Paraguay. Probably more tolerant of shade than its near relative S. atropurpureum.


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