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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

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The Cutting Edge

Volume XI, Number 2, April 2004

News and Notes | Recent Treatments | Leaps and Bounds | Germane Literature | Season's Pick | Annotate your copy

Acevedo, H., J. Bustamante, L. Paniagua & R. Chaves. 2002. Ecosistemas de la cuenca hidrográfica del Río Savegre, Costa Rica. Edit. INBio.

Here is a rich source of information on one of the wildest regions of the Costa Rican Pacific slope, the Río Savegre basin, draining the northern part of the Cordillera de Talamanca. Two of the 11 Costa Rican conservation areas are represented here: Pacífico Central and La Amistad-Pacífico. This is the first published product of the ECOMAPAS project, a joint effort of INBio, the Museo Nacional and SINAC (Sistemas Nacional de Áreas de Conservación) begun in 1998, with support from the government of Spain [see The Cutting Edge 8(2): 1, Apr. 2001]. That team applied the methods of Rapid Ecological Assessment to produce a detailed, folded, color map of the Río Savegre basin, plus a companion volume chock full of relevant ecological information. Most of the information in the book is presented under 44 extended descriptions of the different ecosystems represented in the area, as defined by these workers. Of special interest to us are the extensive (though unvouchered) lists of characteristic plant species, separated according to habit type. The botanical exploration of the Savegre basin represented a major contribution to Costa Rican floristics, yielding at least one country record, Sebastiania panamensis G. L. Webster (Euphorbiaceae) [see The Cutting Edge 8(2): 5, Apr. 2001]. Two additional spp. are claimed (falsely, in both cases) as endemic to this river basin: Bartlettina silvicola (B. L. Rob.) R. M. King & H. Rob. (Asteraceae) and Passiflora gilbertiana J. M. MacDougal (Passifloraceae). Appendices to the book include a glossary and a list (also unvouchered) of all the vascular plant spp. (by family) "observadas" throughout the area. Scattered through the volume are many color photos, maps, and graphs, and at the end are several pages of drawings of selected plant spp. by INBio’s Francisco Quesada. This is Vol. 1 of the series "Ecosistemas de Costa Rica" (see also under Kappelle et al., below).

Acevedo-Rodríguez, P. 2003. Melicocceae (Sapindaceae): Melicoccus and Talisia. Fl. Neotrop. Monogr. 87: 1-179.

Both genera mentioned in the title, the only New World members of tribe Melicocceae, are exclusive to the Neotropics. Melicoccus comprises 10 spp. of Mesoamerica, South America and Hispaniola; however, the genus is represented in Costa Rica only by the cultivated M. bijugatus Jacq. (native to northern South America), esteemed for its green, litchi-like fruits ("mamón"). The much larger Talisia (52 spp.) is also widely distributed in the Neotropics (though absent from the Antilles). The author attributes a surprising total of four Talisia spp. to Costa Rica, compared to just two, T. allenii Croat and T. nervosa Radlk., accounted for in our database and in Francisco Morales’s Manual draft treatment of Sapindaceae [see The Cutting Edge 7(1): 3-4, Jan. 2000]. The latter sp. is maintained here, but the name Talisia allenii, formerly applied to a sp. restricted to southwestern Costa Rica and adjacent Panama, is synonymized under T. macrophylla (Mart.) Radlk., extending southward to Peru, Venezuela, the Guianas, and Brazil. Rounding out the Costa Rican complement of Talisia spp. are T. cerasina (Benth.) Radlk., of the Pacific lowlands from Parque Nacional Carara to Golfito (thence south to Bolivia and Brazil), and T. croatii Acev.-Rodr. sp. nov., from near Palmar Norte and the Golfo Dulce region (to Peru and Brazil). To be expected in southeastern Costa Rica is the vegetatively distinctive Talisia princeps Oliv., known by a sterile collection from Prov. Bocas del Toro, Panama. Features a key to genera (but no formal description of the tribe), full synonymy and descriptions of genera and lesser taxa, a key to the two subgenera of Talisia, keys to spp. (nested under the subgenera in Talisia) and subspp., composite line drawings and distribution maps, and (for each genus) a section on excluded taxa. The sp. entries each include paragraphs on phenology, distribution and ecology, common names and uses (occasionally), a generally brief discussion, and a list of exsiccatae (representative, even for new spp.). Indices to exsiccatae and local and common names close out the volume. Fourteen new spp. and three new subspp. are described in this monograph, and four new combinations are validated (one subgenus, two spp., and one subsp.); except for the aforementioned Talisia croatii, none of these taxonomic novelties pertains to Costa Rica (except insofar as all the Costa Rican Talisia spp. become relegated to the autonymic subgenus).

Atwood, J. T. 2003. Review of the Maxillaria graminifolia (Kunth) Rchb. f. (Orchidaceae) suballiance. Selbyana 24: 144-164.

This group comprises six spp., ranging from Costa Rica to Bolivia and Venezuela, with only Maxillaria appendiculoides C. Schweinf. and M. linearifolia Ames & C. Schweinf. attributed to Costa Rica (the former being endemic). This represents no net change from the author’s Manual account of Maxillaria. The "suballiance" is redefined, and all spp. are thoroughly described and characterized. Also included are a key to spp. (at the end), full synonymy and typology, comprehensive specimen citations, and range maps. Each sp. is illustrated with a photograph (of a herbarium specimen) and a line drawing showing floral details.

Bauer, R. 2003. A synopsis of the tribe Hylocereeae F. Buxb. Cactaceae Syst. Init. 17: 3-63.

"Intended to be a precursor to a monographic treatment" of tribe Hylocereeae (Cactaceae), this work admirably fulfills that function. Useful features include a key to genera, keys to species and infraspecific taxa for each genus and, for each species and infraspecific taxon, full bibliographic and typological information, synonymy, and a summary of distribution. Discussions are provided as necessary, and these are often extensive and insightful. The author’s generic concepts are in general accord with the Manual draft treatment by co-PI Barry Hammel, the major exception being that all the Costa Rican representatives of Disocactus sensu Hammel (i.e., s. l.) are here segregated in Pseudorhipsalis; Disocactus sensu Bauer (s. str.) occurs only from Mexico to northern Nicaragua. All of the remaining genera (Epiphyllum, Hylocereus, Selenicereus and Weberocereus) are represented in Costa Rica. Many lectotypes, neotypes, and epitypes are designated in this paper, and many new combinations are validated (frequently involving a change in status from var. to subsp.), but just one new taxon (which does not occur in Costa Rica). Significant innovations relevant to the Costa Rican flora are as follows: the much-used name Epiphyllum phyllanthus is restricted to South American plants and replaced, in Costa Rica, with E. hookeri Haw. subsp. pittieri (F. A. C. Weber) Ralf Bauer comb. nov.; Costa Rican material of E. thomasianum (K. Schum.) Britton & Rose is distinguished as E. t. subsp. costaricense (F. A. C. Weber) Ralf Bauer comb. nov.; Mesoamerican material of Pseudorhipsalis amazonica (K. Schum.) Ralf Bauer comb. nov. is assigned to subsp. panamensis (Britton & Rose) Ralf Bauer comb. nov., and that of P. ramulosa (Salm-Dyck) Barthlott to the autonymic subsp.; Selenicereus wercklei (F. A. C. Weber) Britton & Rose falls into synonymy under S. inermis (Otto) Britton & Rose; and Weberocereus biolleyi (F. A. C. Weber) Britton & Rose is demoted as W. tunilla (F. A. C. Weber) Britton & Rose subsp. biolleyi (F. A. C. Weber) Ralf Bauer, with W. panamensis Britton & Rose as a synonym. The peculiar myrmecophile lately known as Selenicereus testudo (Karw. ex Zucc.) Buxb. is reassigned to the genus Strophocactus-apparently not even a member of tribe Hylocereeae-with the combination Strophocactus testudo (Karw. ex Zucc.) Ralf Bauer duly validated. Finally, the mysterious entity known as Disocactus kimnachii G. D. Rowley or Nopalxochia horichii Kimnach, based on a Costa Rican type, is dismissed as "probably a hybrid between E[piphyllum]. crenatum subsp. kimnachii and a plant of the ‘Heliocereus’ group" (neither of which is known from Costa Rica). Some of the author’s observations (especially with respect to Strophocactus and Disocactus kimnachii) suggest (to us) that it might not be such a bad idea to collapse many of these genera (perhaps including several entire tribes) back into Cereus. Illustrated with several composite line drawings, two color photographic plates (including Barry Hammel’s photo of Weberocereus frohningiorum Ralf Bauer), and two reproductions of colored drawings.

Chandler, G. T. & G. M. Plunkett. 2004. Evolution in Apiales: nuclear and chloroplast markers together in (almost) perfect harmony. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 144: 123-147.

Phylogenetic analysis of nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences upholds the distinction of Apiaceae and Araliaceae, virtually in their traditional senses, except that two tribes (Mackinlayeae and Myodocarpeae) of the latter family form separate lineages that may or may not merit family ranking. A complication relevant to Costa Rican floristics involves the ever-problematic Apiaceae subfam. Hydrocotyloideae, here confirmed as polyphyletic, with genera scattered among three of the four aforementioned lineages. To address only those genera occurring in Costa Rica: Hydrocotyle itself is a solid member of the "core" Araliaceae, while Azorella and ' Spananthe are similarly embedded among the "core" Apiaceae. However, Centella and Micropleura belong to a third lineage, the Mackinlaya group, still of uncertain placement; it may warrant recognition as a distinct family, or perhaps merely as a subfamily of Apiaceae.

Christenson, E. A. 2004. The genus Warmingia. Orchid Rev. 112: 84-88.

Five spp. are tentatively accepted in the obscure genus Warmingia (Orchidaceae), including W. margaritacea B. Johans., a Costa Rican endemic known from a single collection. This is a brief synopsis, with nice color photos but no key or formal descriptions.

De Queiroz, L. P., R. H. Fortunato & A. M. Giulietti. 2003. Phylogeny of the Diocleinae (Papilionoideae: Phaseoleae) based on morphological characters. Pp. 303-324 in, B. B. Klitgaard & A. Bruneau (eds.), Advances in legume systematics, part 10, Higher level systematics. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Parsimony analysis of 82 morphological characters suggests that both Dioclea and Galactia are polyphyletic. Most of the Costa Rican representatives of the former genus were included in the study; of these, only Dioclea virgata (Rich.) Amshoff occurs in the same clade as the generic type (D. sericea Kunth), and would thus retain its name in the event of a formal taxonomic split. The recent merger of the monotypic Cymbosema in Dioclea, by Manual co-PI Nelson Zamora [see The Cutting Edge 7(3): 9, Jul. 2000], "had low bootstrap support" in this study (although the published cladograms suggest that it is at least a viable alternative). The situation in Galactia is less clearly resolved. See Maxwell & Taylor (below) for additional insights on this group.

Drábková, L., J. Kirschner, O. Seberg, G. Petersen & Č. Vlček. 2003. Phylogeny of the Juncaceae based on rbcL sequences, with special emphasis on Luzula DC. and Juncus L. Pl. Syst. Evol. 240: 133-147.

Luzula is monophyletic but, of course, Juncus is not. What this could portend for the Juncus spp. occurring in Costa Rica is unclear, because just two (J. bufonius L. and J. effusus L.) of the six were included in the study; furthermore, the cladogram is not well resolved in many portions. The authors note that "if one were to reshape the current taxonomy of the Juncaceae on the basis of [their cladogram], the taxonomy would undergo radical changes." Wisely, they leave it at that, in lieu of the usual "additional data."

Dressler, R. H., W. M. Whitten & N. H. Williams. 2004. Phylogenetic relationships of Scaphyglottis and related genera (Laeliinae: Orchidaceae) based on nrDNA ITS sequence data. Brittonia 56: 58-66.

This is the evidential basis for the merger of Hexisea and Reichenbachanthus (among other formerly accepted genera) in Scaphyglottis, a move that was formalized (in anticipation of this paper), for the purposes of the Manual Orchidaceae treatment, at the eleventh hour [see The Cutting Edge 9(2): 4-5, Apr. 2002]. Three new combinations are validated here, none germane to Costa Rican floristics.

Finot, V. L., P. M. Peterson, R. J. Soreng & F. O. Zuloaga. 2004. A revision of Trisetum, Peyritschia, and Sphenopholis (Poaceae: Pooideae: Aveninae) in Mexico and Central America. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 91: 1-30.

As presaged in this column in our last issue [see The Cutting Edge 11(1): 11, Jan. 2004], Trisetum has now (rather, again) been split into smaller genera, of which the first two mentioned in the title occur in Costa Rica. The Manual Poaceae treatment by Francisco Morales accounted for five Costa Rican spp. of Trisetum s. l.; three of these, Trisetum irazuense (Kuntze) Hitchc., T. pringlei (Scribn. ex Beal) Hitchc., and T. tonduzii Hitchc., remain in that genus, while the other two are here treated formally under Peyritschia, in which they aleady have available names: Peyritschia deyeuxioides (Kunth) Finot [previously Trisetum deyeuxioides (Kunth) Kunth] and P. pringlei (Scribn.) S. D. Koch (the former T. kochianum Hern. Torres). The authors provide no phylogenetic rationale for the generic makeover, and admit that "the systematic relationships of the Mexican and Central American species of Trisetum are not well understood." Includes a key to genera, generic descriptions, separated keys to spp., synonymy and typology at all levels, comprehensive specimen citations, composite line drawings of selected spp., and an index to scientific names.

Fuentes-Soriano, S. 2004. A taxonomic revision of Pennellia (Brassicaceae). Harvard Pap. Bot. 8: 173-202.

Pennellia comprises seven spp., mostly ranging from the southwestern United States to Guatemala, with one sp. disjunct in Bolivia and northern Argentina. Pennellia longifolia (Benth.) Rollins, the most wide-ranging member of the genus, was recently found in Costa Rica [see The Cutting Edge 5(4): 4, Oct. 1998]; but while Costa Rica is mentioned in the distribution summaries of both the sp. and genus, no supporting specimens or references are cited. Includes a key to the four genera of the "Halimolobine clade," a key to Pennellia spp., synonymy and descriptions of the genus and all spp., comprehensive specimen citations, and distribution maps. Most spp. (but not P. longifolia) are illustrated with composite line drawings. No taxonomic novelties.

Hidalgo, O., T. Garnatje, A. Susanna & J. Mathez. 2004. Phylogeny of Valerianaceae based on matK and ITS markers, with reference to matK individual polymorphism. Ann. Bot. (Oxford) 93: 283-293.

The large genus Valeriana appears to be paraphyletic, "with profound nomenclatural and taxonomic implications"; however, the authors admit that the "American species are not well represented, which makes our results somewhat provisional." Indeed, the widespread Valeriana scandens L. is the only sp. occurring in Costa Rica that was sampled. While it is removed from the clade that includes the generic type (Valeriana officinalis L.), V. scandens could yet be retained in Valeriana (according to these cladograms) were the nested, New World amphitropical genus Plectritis to be absorbed.

Higgins, W. E., C. van den Berg & W. M. Whitten. 2003. A combined molecular phylogeny of Encyclia (Orchidaceae) and relationships within Laeliinae. Selbyana 24: 165-179.

Combined analysis of sequence data from both nuclear and plastid genes demonstrates that Encyclia s. l. is not monophyletic (though it could easily be made so with the inclusion of a few mono- or oligospecific genera, such as Homalopetalum and Meiracyllium). On the other hand, both Encyclia s. str. and the recently segregated Prosthechea [see The Cutting Edge 5(2): 4, Apr. 1998] are strongly supported as monophyletic clades. As an aside, the phylogenetic distinction of Myrmecophila from Schomburgkia is upheld.

Hilger, H. H. & N. Diane. 2003. A systematic analysis of Heliotropiaceae (Boraginales) based on trnL and ITS1 sequence data. Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 125: 19-51.

The results of this study suggest that (in the understatement of the year) "traditional generic limits [in Heliotropiaceae] warrant adjustment" (we’re still groping to understand what became of traditional familiar limits!). The gist of it is, both Heliotropium and Tournefortia are polyphyletic, with potentially horrific consequences. In the worst-case scenario, the name Tournefortia would apparently cease to be used at all; this is because most of the spp. in the aforementioned genera (including both generic types) are grouped together in a single, large clade upon which these authors would bestow generic status under the name Heliotropium (though why this should be is unclear, because the two genus names have equal priority, and neither is conserved). The only Costa Rican Tournefortia to escape this particular holocaust is T. volubilis L. (and presumably T. maculata Jacq., not included in the study), isolated in a distinct lineage to which the generic name Myriopus Small would apply. A fourth lineage, sporting the generic moniker Euploca Nutt., harbors a fairly sizeable block of Heliotropium spp., with H. procumbens Mill. being the only identifiable Costa Rican representative. Pending final resolution of the relationships within Heliotropium s. l., the authors "advocate maintaining the genus Tournefortia, which is easily defined," while accepting that "under this definition the genus Heliotropium is paraphyletic." Twenty-two new combinations in the accepted genera are validated, none pertinent to Costa Rica.

Iwarsson, M. & Y. Harvey. 2003. Monograph of the genus Leonotis (Pers.) R. Br. (Lamiaceae). Kew Bull. 58: 597-645.

This genus of strikingly orange-flowered herbs and shrubs, best known for the cultivated ornamental Leonotis leonurus (L.) R. Br., is here resolved into nine spp. Leonotis is exclusively African, except for the pantropical, annual weed L. nepetifolia (L.) R. Br. var. nepetifolia, the only taxon known from Costa Rica (where it is of very local occurrence and presumably not native). Includes synonymy at all levels, a genus description, a combined key to spp. and vars., detailed genus descriptions, selected specimen citations, and distribution maps (though only African collections of Leonotis nepetifolia are cited and mapped). The sp. entries provide information on distribution, habitat, conservation, and (irregularly) local names and notes. The introduction features discussions of affinities and pollination. Indices to scientific names and exsiccatae are presented as appendices. Four new taxa (three spp. and one var.) are described and illustrated, and one new combination (at varietal rank) is validated; none of these are germane to Costa Rica.

Kadereit, G., T. Borsch, K. Weising & H. Freitag. 2003. Phylogeny of Amaranthaceae and Chenopodiaceae and the evolution of C4 photosynthesis. Int. J. Pl. Sci. 164: 959-986.

Cladistic analysis of sequence variation of the chlorosplast gene rbcL provides strong support for the monophyly of Amaranthaceae and Chenopodiaceae taken together, and also for their sister-group relationship with the small family Achatocarpaceae. However, the exact relationship between Amaranthaceae and Chenopodiaceae could not be elucidated, leading the authors to "follow the traditionally recognized families," at least for the time being, forestalling their merger as proposed, e.g., by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group [see The Cutting Edge 6(1): 5-6, Jan. 1999]. The evolution of C4 photosynthesis has occurred independently at least 13 times in the two families (whoever said evolution was parsimonious?).

Kappelle, M., M. Castro, H. Acevedo, L. González & H. Monge. 2003. Ecosistemas del Área de Conservación Osa (ACOSA)/Ecosystems of the Osa Conservation Area (ACOSA). Edit. INBio.

This is Vol. 2 of the series "Ecosistemas de Costa Rica," with the same genesis and principal features as the first volume (see under Acevedo et al., above). Unlike its predecessor, this contribution tackles a single conservation area in its entirety, resolving the Osa Conservation Area into 38 different ecosystems. It also differs in being fully bilingual (Spanish/English).

Krapovickas, A. 2003. Revisión de Sida sección Muticae C. Presl (Malvaceae-Malveae). Bonplandia 12: 123-132.

This section is here regarded as comprising six spp., five of which (all restricted to northeastern Brazil) are newly integrated. Three of the latter are newly described. The widespread Sida aggregata C. Presl, the original member of the section, remains the only Costa Rican representative (though no Costa Rican material was seen by this author). A synoptic treatment, including a key to spp., synonymy and typology, specimen citations, and some illustrations, but omitting descriptions (except for the new spp.).

Landrum, L. R. 2003. A revision of the Psidium salutare complex (Myrtaceae). Sida 20: 1449-1469.

The Psidium salutare complex, which ranges throughout the Neotropics, is characterized by a usually subshrubby to shrubby habit, the ability to resprout from underground stems, leaves with reticulate tertiary veins and a prominent marginal vein, relatively small flowers, and a preference for grasslands or frequently burned shrublands. Although "at least 44" sp. names have been proposed, the author resolves this complex into just two spp., Psidium laruotteanum Cambess. and P. salutare (Kunth) O. Berg, the latter with five vars. "that correspond closely with geographic patterns" (i.e., they meet our main criterion for subspp.). Both spp. occur in Costa Rica, where P. laruotteanum has traditionally been called P. savannarum Donn. Sm. (here synonymized); because the latter has been considered restricted to Costa Rica (P. laruotteanum being otherwise South American), we lose another endemic. All the Mesoamerican and Caribbean material of P. salutare belongs to the autonymic var., the only one of the five occurring outside South America. Features a combined key to spp. and vars., full synonymy and typology, detailed sp. descriptions and abbreviated var. descriptions, representative specimen citations, range maps, and two composite photographic plates of exsiccatae. Four new combinations (none of which concerns us) are validated at var. rank. Numerous lectotypifications are proposed.

Levin, R. A., W. L. Wagner, P. C. Hoch, W. J. Hahn, A. Rodríguez, D. A. Baum, L. Katinas, E. A. Zimmer & K. J. Sytsma. 2004. Paraphyly in tribe Onagreae: insights into phylogenetic relationships of Onagraceae based on nuclear and chloroplast sequence data. Syst. Bot. 29: 147-164.

The only result of significant relevance to Costa Rican floristics is that Oenothera emerges as paraphyletic with respect to Calylophus, Gaura and Stenosiphon. The authors betray a mild inclination toward lumping the last three genera (none of which occur in Costa Rica) into an inclusive Oenothera, defined by "a unique stigma with four non-commissural lobes." However, if the splitting option were to be pursued, those Oenothera spp. in clades remote from the one containing the generic type (O. biennis L.) could be bounced from the genus. At least two spp. occurring in Costa Rica, Oenothera rosea L’Hér. ex Aiton and O. tetraptera Cav., are vulnerable.

Li, J. & J. G. Conran. 2003. Phylogenetic relationships in Magnoliaceae subfam. Magnolioideae: a morphological cladistic analysis. Pl. Syst. Evol. 242: 33-47.

This rather weak study pretends to support previous suggestions that Magnolia be circumscribed as a large, diverse genus (i.e., to include Talauma and other satellites); however, very few spp. were included, and the jury should still be considered out on this issue.

Liede, S. & U. Meve. 2004. Revision of Metastelma (Apocynaceae-Asclepiadoideae) in southwestern North America and Central America. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 91: 31-86.

Metastelma, with "probably around 70" spp., is distributed throughout the Neotropics, but most diverse (with "ca. 30" spp.) in the Caribbean region. Notwithstanding "the unfortunate inclusion of almost every small American asclepiad with twining habit and pendulous pollinia in Cynanchum by Woodson," the distinctness of Metastelma and other genera (with Cynanchum s. str. largely confined to the Old World) has been confirmed in prior molecular work involving the first author [see, e.g., The Cutting Edge 10(1): 7, Jan. 2003]. Of the 16 Metastelma spp. recognized from the study region, just two occur in Costa Rica: M. barbigerum Scheele and M. pedunculare Decne. The only Costa Rica collection (from near Cañas) of the former sp. here cited is the type of Cynanchum liesneriana L. O. Williams, the basionym of Metastelma barbigerum var. liesneriana (L. O. Williams) Liede & Meve comb. nov., otherwise known only from southern Mexico, Belize and Guatemala (two other vars. range from southern Texas to southern Mexico). Metastelma pedunculare, recorded from Guatemala, Nicaragua, and scattered localities mostly on the Pacific slope in Costa Rica (Monteverde, Valle Central, N Cordillera de Talamanca), has previously been called Cynanchum sepicola (Pittier) L. O. Williams, C. woodsonianum L. O. Williams, Metastelma sepicola Pittier (all now regarded as synonyms), and (in Flora de Nicaragua) "Metastelma sp. B." We assume (but cannot be sure) that our database records of a third sp. in Costa Rica, Metastelma schlechtendalii Decne. [Cynanchum schlechtendalii (Decne.) Standl. & Steyerm.], correctly pertain to M. barbigerum (M. schlechtendalii ranging from southern Mexico to Honduras, according to this revision). Features a genus description, key to spp. and infraspecific taxa, lengthy sp. descriptions (except where infraspecific taxa are recognized, when only those are described), synonymy and typology at all levels, comprehensive specimen citations, distribution maps, composite line drawings of most taxa, sections on excluded and insufficiently known names, and indices to exsiccatae and scientific names. An introductory discussion of morphology is illustrated with superb SEM micrographs of floral details. Under "Excluded Names," new generic affiliations are indicated (though the appropriate new combinations are inexplicably not made) for each entry, including several spp. reported from Costa Rica (mostly as Cynanchum): Metastelma filisepalum Standl. [C. filisepalum (Standl.) L. O. Williams], referred to Scyphostelma Baill., and the arguably distinct M. glaberrimum Woodson [C. glaberrimum (Woodson) L. O. Williams] and M. sepium (Decne.) W. D. Stevens [C. sepium (Decne.) Standl.], both members of Orthosia Kunth (the two concepts were combined as "Orthosia sp. A" in Flora de Nicaragua).

Luckow, M., J. T. Miller, D. J. Murphy & T. Livschultz. 2003. A phylogenetic analysis of the Mimosoideae (Leguminosae) based on chloroplast DNA sequence data. Pp. 197-220 in, B. B. Klitgaard & A. Bruneau (eds.), Advances in legume systematics, part 10, Higher level systematics. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Yet another nail in the coffin for the venerable Acacia s. l., here resoundingly affirmed as non-monophyletic, in general accord with previous studies. Acacia s. str. (i.e., the A. farnesiana sp. group plus the ant acacias) is strongly supported as monophyletic, and is well removed from the other members of Acacia s. l. Also well supported as monophyletic is the Australasian Acacia subg. Phyllodineae (DC.) Ser. (Racosperma). However, Acacia subg. Aculeiferum Vassal (Senegalia), comprising many scandent spp., here emerges as paraphyletic. In conclusion, the authors implicitly support generic recognition for three Acacia s. l. lineages (Acacia s. str., Acacia subg. Phyllodineae, and "the core" of Acacia subg. Aculeiferum), but stop short of embracing two other generic segregates promoted by Maslin et al. [see The Cutting Edge 10(2): 9-10, Apr. 2003], with the proviso that "denser sampling of both taxa and characters will be necessary to further resolve" relationships in the group. Incidentally, Piptadenia "is still not monophyletic as currently circumscribed," while the separation of Calliandra and Zapoteca appears beyond reproach.

Maas, P. J. M., L. Y. T. Westra, L. W. Chatrou & collaborators. 2003. Duguetia (Annonaceae). Fl. Neotrop. Monogr. 88: 1-276.

Duguetia is overwhelmingly neotropical, with just four West African spp. among its 93 total. The African spp. (formerly segregated under the name Pachypodanthium) are also treated here, but in a separate section. In the Neotropics, Duguetia is the third largest genus of Annonaceae (after Guatteria and Annona). However, it is largely South American, with just two spp. represented in Costa Rica: Duguetia confusa Maas, in very wet lowland forests on both slopes and ranging from southeastern Nicaragua to Colombia; and D. panamensis Standl., restricted to the Atlantic lowlands from southeastern Nicaragua to northeastern Panama. Features full synonymy and lengthy descriptions at both genus and sp. ranks, separate dichotomous keys for the neotropical and African spp., a synoptical key to the neotropical spp. and (for each sp.) a distribution summary, a list of specimens examined (sometimes representative), an occasional section on local names and/or uses, and a discussion. Selected spp. (D. confusa, but not D. panamensis) are illustrated with composite line drawings. The well illustrated introductory parts (presented as more or less independent articles mostly authored by the legion of "collaborators") deal with a wide range of topics including taxonomic history, morphology, various aspects of anatomy, karyology, palynology, chemistry, floral biology, dispersal, distribution, phylogeny, uses, and conservation. Distribution maps are grouped at the end of the volume, together with sections on insufficiently known and excluded spp., indices to exsiccatae (with African collectors listed separately) and local and scientific names, and a list of vouchers (e.g., for the original anatomical, karylogical, and palynological work presented in the opening chapters). No taxonomic novelties are proposed in this monograph.

Maxwell, R. H. & D. W. Taylor. 2003. Phylogenetic relationships of the Diocleinae with particular emphasis on the subgroups of Dioclea. Pp. 325-353 in, B. B. Klitgaard & A. Bruneau (eds.), Advances in legume systematics, part 10, Higher level systematics. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Despite using different outgroups and characters, this cladistic analysis of mainly morphological characters largely supports an independent study by a different laboratory (see de Queiroz et al., above): to wit, both Dioclea and Galactia are polyphyletic. However, in the present study, the former genus does not resolve quite so nicely into two discrete groups. Dioclea guianensis Benth., occurring in Costa Rica (and not studied by de Queiroz et al.), is sister to D. virgata (Rich.) Amshoff in a clade near to the generic type. From the published cladogram, the merger of Cymbosema in Dioclea would appear to be at least potentially tenable, although the authors oppose this on practical grounds.

Moya Roque, R. 2004. Gmelina arborea en Costa Rica. Bois Forêts Trop. 279(1): 47-57.

Presents details of culture and use in Costa Rica of Gmelina arborea Roxb. ex Sm. (Verbenaceae), an Asian tree introduced in 1975 which has become "the most commonly used species for timber production." All sentient beings will recoil at the author’s egregious misappropriation of the term "reforestación" in reference to monoculture plantations of this exotic plant (and some may object to the description of its punky wood as "timber").

Nicolson, D. H. & J. H. Wiersema. 2004. (1618) Proposal to conserve Sesamum indicum against Sesamum orientale (Pedaliaceae). Taxon 53: 210-211.

The two names referenced in the title, both validated by Linnaeus in 1753, have long been regarded as synonyms for commercial sesame, sparingly cultivated and sometimes escaping in Costa Rica. This is one of those intractable cases in which the accepted name keeps changing as workers discover ever older instances of union under a one name or the other. The present authors propose to put an end to this cycle by conserving the name that is currently most used (as supported by hard evidence from the Internet).

Pedley, L. 2003. A synopsis of Racosperma C. Mart. (Leguminosae: Mimosoideae). Austrobaileya 6: 445-496.

A recent proposal to conserve the generic name Acacia so as to apply to its largest (and overwhelmingly Australian) block of spp. argued (among other things) that failure to conserve would require over 800 new combinations in Racosperma, the correct genus name for the group [see The Cutting Edge 10(4): 10-11, Oct. 2003]. Now, in one swell foop, that concern is neutralized with the validation of 834 new combinations (at sp. and infraspecific ranks) in Racosperma, by the Australian worker who reinstated the name (and first advocated the fragmentation of Acacia) in 1986. So even the Australians are not united on this issue! The author notes that he "delayed publishing this paper for a year" to allow the conservation proposal to be submitted. Should that proposal fail, the names Racosperma and Pedley will quickly become very familiar to botanists down under. Looking at the bigger picture, this paper effectively demolishes the notion of conservation as an expedient to obviate the hardship of having to make new combinations; indeed, the reverse is true: even astronomical numbers of new combinations can be published more quickly and easily than a conservation proposal can be readied for submission (let alone ruled upon).

Pendry, C. A. 2004. Monograph of Ruprechtia (Polygonaceae). Syst. Bot. Monogr. 67: 1-113.

Ruprechtia, wide-ranging throughout the Neotropics, comprises (according to this revision) 37 spp. of dioecious trees, shrubs and lianas. At most two of these occur in Costa Rica, notably the recently described R. costaricensis Pendry. The description of the last-mentioned sp. (see under this column in our last issue) disregarded the issue of whether the name Ruprechtia costata Meisn., previously applied to all Costa Rican material, should still be used for any of it. Frustratingly, Pendry’s monograph fails to enlighten on that score: while "Costa Rica (Puntarenas)" is included in his distribution summary, no Costa Rican collections are either cited or mapped. Features synonymy, nomenclatural and typological documentation, and detailed descriptions at all levels, as well as range maps and composite line drawings of selected spp. (mainly, those described by Pendry here or elsewhere). The sp. key is based on pistillate material, but is supplemented (in the back of the volume) by five regional keys, each a tandem affair serving for both pistillate specimens and sterile or staminate specimens. The individual sp. entries include information on phenology, distribution, and vernacular names, comprehensive exsiccatae citations, and discussions. The introductory part contains sections (generally brief) on taxonomic history, morphology, generic delimitation, infrageneric classification, habitats and distribution, pollination and dispersal, chromosome numbers, and fossil record; a separately authored chapter presents a phylogenetic analysis of the genus. Concluding the volume are a list of excluded names and indices to exsiccatae and scientific names. Two new spp. are described, neither relevant to Costa Rica.

Plowman, T. & N. Hensold. 2004. Names, types, and distribution of neotropical species of Erythroxylum (Erythroxylaceae). Brittonia 56: 1-53.

This comprehensive nomenclator, appearing 15 years after the first author’s untimely death, will be the starting point for any future systematic work on Erythroxylum. Bibliographic and typological information are provided for 358 names published through the year 2000, including 187 accepted spp., eight accepted vars., 27 infraspecific names of uncertain status, and 136 synonyms. For accepted names, a distribution summary is given, often together with miscellaneous commentary. Reference is made to a URL at which a searchable specimen database and type-image archive may be accessed.

Powell, E. A. & K. A. Kron. 2003. Molecular systematics of the northern Andean blueberries (Vaccinieae, Vaccinioideae, Ericaceae). Int. J. Pl. Sci. 164: 987-995.

Phylogenetic analysis of sequence data from four different genes shows that six of the 10 genera for which more than one sp. were sampled are not monophyletic, casting serious doubt on the morphological characters traditionally used to delimit them. Thibaudia is most seriously polyphyletic, with spp. occurring in four of the seven major clades identified in this study. Disterigma and Satyria are also polyphyletic (with D. trimerum Wilbur & Luteyn excluded a priori, and used as an outgroup), while Macleania and Psammisia are paraphyletic. Anthopterus, Cavendishia, Sphyrospermum and Themistoclesia are all very strongly supported as monophyletic. Classificatory options are scarcely addressed, pending the usual "increased taxon sampling"; interestingly, however, the Central American Satyria spp. (including the generic type) "form a strongly supported monophyletic group," well characterized morphologically, and sister to Thibaudia costaricensis Hoerold, the only Central American member of its genus.

Pupulin, F. 2003. Orchideenflora Mittelamerika-Ergänzungen (Teil 1)/Orchid flora of Central America-Supplements (Part 1)/Additamenta ad orchideologiam mesoamericanam (pars 1). Orchidee (Hamburg) 54: 467-477.

And what would an issue of The Cutting Edge be without a handful of new Costa Rican orchid spp. from our pal Franco Pupulin? This is a peculiar paper in that the abstract ("Summary") describes even the results of part 2, not appearing in this issue; for example, three new spp. names are mentioned in the abstract, but just two are addressed in this paper. Both of the latter are Lepanthes spp.: L. casasae Pupulin, from Monteverde, is compared to L. ferrelliae Luer, while L. schugii Pupulin, from near Santa María de Dota, is compared to L. edwardsii Ames. With these additions (both illustrated with color photos from life, as well as composite line drawings), Costa Rica now boasts 95 spp. of Lepanthes, the fourth largest Orchidaceae genus in the country. New distributional data are provided for four additional orchid spp. (of the nine enumerated in the abstract). Two of these have been considered Panamanian endemics, and apparently qualify as country records for Costa Rica (based on the Manual Orchidaceae account): Pleurothallis butcheri L. O. Williams [here as Acianthera butcheri (L. O. Williams) Pridgeon & M. W. Chase], from Fila Tinamastes in the northern Fila Costeña, and Chondrorhyncha crassa Dressler, allegedly from along the Río Pacuare in Prov. Cartago; however, the former is vouchered only by a spirit collection at the "Gaia Botanical Garden" [the same specimen cited in Pupulin’s checklist; see The Cutting Edge 9(4): 10-11, Oct. 2002], and the latter by a specimen (also in liquid) prepared from a cultivated individual. Several collections (all in spirit) from the Tapantí region, plus one from western Panama, voucher the natural occurrence of Chondrorhyncha lankesteriana Pupulin (treated in the Manual, but then known only from cultivated material). Finally, Kefersteinia orbicularis Pupulin, initially known only from Cerro Nara, is reported from several other localities in the southern Pacific region (but these were already accounted for in the Manual). Chondrorhyncha crassa is redescribed based on the Costa Rican material, and illustrated with a typically superb composite line drawing and a color photo from life. Also depicted in color photos are C. lankesteriana and Kefersteinia orbicularis.

--. 2003. Orchideenflora Mittelamerika-Ergänzungen (Teil 2) /Orchid flora of Central America-Supplements (Part 2)/Additamenta ad orchideologiam mesoamericanam (pars 2). Orchidee (Hamburg) 54: 561-568.

Here we have the second (and presumably final) installment of this series, with the third new sp., Maxillaria atwoodiana Pupulin, duly described. Four collections are cited, but just two have locality data, documenting their occurrence at 200-400 m elevation in the basin of the Río Savegre, on the Pacific slope of the northern Cordillera de Talamanca. The new sp. is compared with both Maxillaria confusa Ames & C. Schweinf. and M. ramonensis Schltr., and is envisioned as a counterpart of the latter in relatively xeric habitats. Illustrated with a fine composite line drawing and a close-up color photo from life. The three new orchid spp. described in this set of papers raise our running total of new orchid spp. described since the inception of this newsletter to 209. The present contribution cites other specimens resulting in the loss of two Costa Rican endemics, Macroclinium alleniorum Dressler & Pupulin and M. robustum Pupulin & D. E. Mora, both of which can now be reported from Panama. However, the converse situation is presented by Stellilabium fortunae Dressler, a former Panamanian endemic recently collected in the Monteverde region by Gabriel Barboza (let’s get his name right!). Both of the Macroclinium spp. are depicted in color photos from life (and M. robustum also by a detailed floral drawing). Costa Rica now boasts 108 Maxillaria spp. (unless we’ve missed something) and 14 spp. of Stellilabium (three more than were treated in the Manual!). Both this and the first part of this set are fully bilingual (German/English).

Sánchez-Baracaldo, P. 2004. Phylogenetics and biogeography of the neotropical fern genera Jamesonia and Eriosorus (Pteridaceae). Amer. J. Bot. 91: 274-284.

Though familiar and superficially distinctive, the two genera mentioned in the title are known to hybridize, and are weakly separated by details of frond architecture that appear (at least in Costa Rica) to be more or less correlated with elevation. We have long suspected that they should be lumped (Jamesonia being the older name), and now that suspicion is supported by solid evidence: cladistic analysis of DNA sequence data reveals that neither genus is monophyletic. However, "both genera taken together form a monophyletic group," comprising a paraphyletic Eriosorus, from which the polyphyletic Jamesonia has arisen in several independent lineages. The author makes no explicit recommendations for taxonomic modifications.

Spooner, D. M., R. G. van den Berg, A. Rodríguez, J. Bamberg, R. J. Hijmans & S. I. Lara Cabrera. 2004. Wild potatoes (Solanum section Petota; Solanaceae) of North and Central America. Syst. Bot. Monogr. 68: 1-209.

Solanum sect. Petota Dumort., to which the cultivated potato (S. tuberosum L.) belongs, comprises about 200 spp. ranging from the southwestern United States to Chile and Argentina. South America houses a large majority of the spp., with just 25 (plus four nothospp.) accepted in this contribution for North and Central America. There the group is best represented in Mexico and northern Central America, with but a single member, Solanum longiconicum Bitter, present in Costa Rica [see The Cutting Edge 9(2): 10-11, Apr. 2002]; however, it is not endemic, occurring also in western Panama. Includes full synonymy for the section and all spp., a genus description and very detailed sectional description, and a dichotomous key to wild spp. in the study region, together with a synoptic list of characters. Each sp. entry presents information on phenology, distribution, a comprehensive list of exsiccatae (shunted to an appendix if excessively long), and a discussion. Comprehensive line drawings and distribution maps are provided for all spp. The introductory part covers various topics including taxonomic history, exploration, morphology, breeding systems, interspecific hybridization, relationships (including molecular phylogeny), sp. concept (intended to be phylogenetic, as is the classification), sp. groups (11 are distinguished), habitats and distribution, and uses. The illustrations are supplemented by nine photographic plates (mostly color). An account of doubtful and excluded names and indices to exsiccatae and scientific names conclude the volume. No new spp. are published herein.

Ståhl, B. & M. Källersjö. 2004. Reinstatement of Bonellia (Theophrastaceae). Novon 14: 115-118.

Pursuant to cladistic analyses revealing Jacquinia s. l. as paraphyletic [see The Cutting Edge 10(4): 8, Oct. 2003], the authors fulfill their promise to validate new combinations for the (mostly) orange-flowered spp. under the obscure generic name Bonellia. This move affects the only Costa Rican member of the group, most recently known as Jacquinia nervosa C. Presl, henceforth to be called Bonellia nervosa (C. Presl) B. Ståhl & Källersjö.

Steele, K. P. & M. F. Wojciechowski. 2003. Phylogenetic analyses of tribes Trifolieae and Vicieae, based on sequences of the plastid gene matK (Papilionoideae: Leguminosae). Pp. 355-370 in, B. B. Klitgaard & A. Bruneau (eds.), Advances in legume systematics, part 10, Higher level systematics. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

The only result here with potential consequences for us concerns Melilotus, rarely adventive in Costa Rica, which is shown to be nested within Trigonella.

Steinmann, V. W. 2003. The submersion of Pedilanthus into Euphorbia (Euphorbiaceae). Acta Bot. Mex. 65: 45-50.

In this sequel to his own molecular work portraying Euphorbia s. l. as paraphyletic with respect to Pedilanthus and several other genera [see The Cutting Edge 10(1): 10, Jan. 2003], the author formalizes the absorption of the latter genus nomenclaturally. Pedilanthus nodiflorus Millsp., the only sp. in the group indigenous to Costa Rica, becomes Euphorbia personata (Croizat) V. W. Steinm., based on the synonym Pedilanthus personatus Croizat [the epithet nodiflora being preoccupied by Euphorbia nodiflora Steud. (1840)]. The name Euphorbia tithymaloides L. is available for the cultivated Pedilanthus tithymaloides (L.) Poit. (Linnaeus was way ahead of his time!).

Tam, S.-M., P. C. Boyce, T. M. Upson, D. Barabé, A. Bruneau, F. Forest & J. S. Parker. 2004. Intergeneric and infrafamilial phylogeny of subfamily Monsteroideae (Araceae) revealed by chloroplast trnL-F sequences. Amer. J. Bot. 91: 490-498.

From the perspective of Costa Rican floristics, just one incidental result of this study is noteworthy: in agreement with previous studies, Lemnaceae is strongly supported as nested within Araceae (although it could be maintained at family rank were the Australian Gymnostachys and the north-temperate Lysichiton, Orontium, and Symplocarpus to be removed from Araceae).

Torrecilla, P., J.-Á. López-Rodríguez & P. Catalán. 2004. Phylogenetic relationships of Vulpia and related genera (Poeae, Poaceae) based on analysis of ITS and trnL-F sequences. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 91: 124-158.

This study has succeeded in elucidating a large, well supported monophyletic group, here dubbed the "FEVRE clade," that comprises Vulpia, most of Festuca (including the type sp.), and numerous small genera not represented in Costa Rica. Those few Festuca spp. that occur outside the FEVRE clade cluster with Lolium, and could conceivably be treated under that name. Within the FEVRE clade, Festuca appears to be paraphyletic, while Vulpia is polyphyletic; however, the authors do not attempt or even allude to a formal reclassification of the clade, presumably because "the phylogenetic relationships among [its] main groups still remain obscure" (ostensibly due to "events related to lineage sorting, hybridization, and polyploidization"). Nonetheless, taking the combined cladograms at face value, several scenarios may be envisioned: either Vulpia (together with several other genera) could be sunk (again) into Festuca, or the whole assemblage could be fragmented in a variety of ways into smaller genera. Considering only those spp. occurring in Costa Rica and included in the study (or whose affinity we have been able to establish), Festuca herrerae Davidse, F. ovina L., F. talamancensis Davidse, and F. tolucensis Kunth all belong to the autonymic section (strongly supported as monophyletic) and would thus probably remain in Festuca under any cirscumstances; F. rubra L. occurs in a different clade (within the FEVRE group), and could thus be reclassified. The two Vulpia spp. recorded (adventively) from Costa Rica occur in well separated clades, with nomenclatural consequences inevitable for V. bromoides (L.) Gray, but less certain for V. myuros (L.) C. C. Gmel. (the generic type).

Zamora V., N., Q. Jiménez M. & L. J. Poveda A. 2004. Árboles de Costa Rica/Trees of Costa Rica. Vol. 3. Edit. INBio, Sto. Domingo de Heredia, Costa Rica.

Diputado Quírico Jiménez M. has called our attention to the availability of this recently published volume; however, we have not yet personally beheld a copy, so are unable to provide an encapsulation at the present time.


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