Although some species of Streptocarpus (Gesneriaceae) do not possess a layered shoot apical meristem (SAM), but three individual meristems, the basal meristem (BM), the petiolode meristem (PM) and the groove meristem (GM) on the petiolode from which additional phyllomorphs are formed. To gain insights into the processes involved, we examined the development of seedlings from germination to the formation of the primary phyllomorph in S. rexii, a rosulate species. Our specific focus was to examine the relationship between the functional activity of the GM and meristematic activity, which was assessed by a combined analysis of toluidine blue staining of histological sections and the incorporation of BrdU into meristematic tissues. The results were integrated into 3-D graphics, which suggests a complex spatial and temporal interaction within the GM. The significance of our observations is discussed and compared to the SAM observed in most other angiosperms.