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The Cutting Edge
Volume XXVI, Number 1, January, 2019
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Batista, J. A. N., A. F. S Reis, J. L. Leite Junior & L. B. Bianchetti. 2018. Phylogeny and taxonomy of Habenaria leprieurii, H. alpestris and H. sect. Microdactylae (Orchidaceae), with descriptions of two new taxa. Phytotaxa 373: 241–271.
We are interested only in the taxonomic part of this paper, a revision of the titular section, which comprises the two titular spp. and two others. One of the two others is Habenaria heptadactyla Rchb. f., known from Costa Rica by at least three collections, all from the vicinity of Boruca and Buenos Aires and determined by Manual Orchidaceae coordinator Robert L. Dressler. However, the authors of this paper obviously did not consult the Manual, or any Costa Rican material, as they record H. heptadactyla (and hence, the section to which it belongs) only from Panama, in Mesoamerica. With that caveat, the revision is a thorough one, with synonymy, typology, descriptions, and notes for all taxa below the rank of genus, a dichotomous key to spp., distribution and phenology summaries, and comprehensive specimen citations. All the taxa treated are depicted in composite plates of photographic images. The two new taxa (a sp. and a var.) are Brazilian.
Bogarín, D., Z. Serracín & Z. Samudio. 2018. A new Maxillariella (Orchidaceae: Maxillariinae) from Costa Rica and Panama. Brittonia 70: 394–398.
Two competing classification systems continue to duke it out over traditional Maxillaria (in the sense of the Manual): one that would split it into a dozen or so (in Costa Rica) splinter genera [see The Cutting Edge 15(2): 3–4, Apr. 2008], and the lumpers' response, that would enlarge it with the addition of several genera accepted as distinct in the Manual [see under "Chase," this column, in The Cutting Edge 22(2), Apr. 2015]. At least for the purposes of this paper, these authors come down on the side of splitting. Maxillariella prostrata Bogarín, Serracín & Samudio, compared primarily with the sp. treated as Maxillaria acervata Rchb. f. in the Manual, is reported from Costa Rica and western Panama (though all the Panamanian records are from cultivated plants). In Costa Rica, it ranges mainly from 1250–1650 m, on the Pacific slope of the Cordillera de Talamanca, but with one collection cited from "Palmar Sur" (near sea level!). Flowering is documented (from wild populations) in March and July. Illustrated with a superb composite line drawing and color photos from life. With this latest novelty, our running count of new orchid spp. described from Costa Rica during the past quarter century inches up to 396.
Borsch, T., H. Flores-Olvera, S. Zumaya & K. Müller. 2018. Pollen characters and DNA sequence data converge on a monophyletic genus Iresine (Amaranthaceae, Caryophyllales) and help to elucidate its species diversity. Taxon 67: 944–976
Two monospecific genera are here shown to be nested within Iresine, and both are formally transferred thereto. That is the most earth-shattering result of this study, but because neither of the lost genera (Irenella and Woehleria) occurs in Costa Rica, it has few repercussions for us (e.g., a slight adjustment to the sp. total for Iresine). Of greater utility, for our purposes, is a a so-called "Taxonomic treatment," which is actually just an annotated nomenclator listing the 35 spp. of Iresine accepted by the authors, with synonymy and typology. Strangely, the name Iresine arrecta Standl., which we are currently using for a Costa Rican sp., does not seem to be accounted for anywhere, even as a synonym. "Several lectotypifications" are newly effected, including some for names applicable (at least as synonyms) to spp. occurring in Costa Rica, but without undesirable consequences (as far as we can tell).
Calviño, C. I. & S. G. Martínez. 2018. Typification of plant names belonging to subfamily Apioideae (Apiaceae) for the Flora of Argentina. Phytotaxa 379: 153–161.
Lo and behold, numerous names in Apiaceae subfam. Apioideae "were found to need typification," setting the stage for this publication. By their own count, the authors designate 27 lectotypes and 2 epitypes, all pertaining to spp. of concern to the "Flora of Argentina project." Nonetheless, some inevitably impinge (if ever so slightly) on our own domain: two accepted names for spp. occurring in Costa Rica, Daucus montanus Humb. & Bonpl. ex Spreng. and Osmorhiza mexicana Griseb., are lectotypified, as are a synonym of the former, a synonym of Chaerophyllum andicola (Kunth) K. F. Chung, and the basionym and two synonyms of Cyclospermum leptophyllum (Pers.) Sprague ex Britton & P. Wilson. The application of names is not affected. Is anyone keeping track of this stuff? Seriously.
Cedeño-Fonseca, M., A. P. Karremans & O. O. Ortiz. 2018. Monstera limitaris (Araceae), a new species from the border between Costa Rica and Panama. Phytotaxa 376: 37–42.
Congratulations to Universidad de Costa Rica grad student Marco Vinicio Cedeño [see under "News and Notes" in The Cutting Edge 25(1), Jan. 2018], who now has his first publication, his first new sp., and an official IPNI "standard form." Monstera limitaris M. Cedeño, named for its occurrence in the vicinity of the international boundary, is known by just two collections, both quite recent: the Costa Rican type, from the Valle de Coto Colorado near the border town of Paso Canoas, and a paratype from westernmost Panama (Prov. Chiriquí), somewhat more distant from the border. This is a relatively small area that "is strongly impacted by human activities." The new sp. is compared with Monstera dissecta (Schott) Croat & Grayum, from which it differs by several leaf and inflorescence charactrers contrasted in a table. Features a distribution map and two composite plates (one also depicting M. dissecta) of color photos.
Costa-Silva, R. & M. F. Agra. 2018. Updates on Lycianthes (Solanaceae): a new species from Brazil, notes on taxonomy, and a key to identification of Brazilian species. Nordic J. Bot. 36(10, e01949): 1–8.
Just one small item of peripheral interest to us: the name Solanum sylvicola Brandegee is lectotypified (on a Guatemalan specimen) and newly synonymized under Lycianthes amatitlanensis (J. M. Coult. & Donn. Sm.) Bitter (which occurs in Costa Rica). No changes are mandated for us.
Daly, D. C. & P. V. A. Fine. 2018. Generic limits re-visited and an updated sectional classification for Protium (tribe Protieae). Studies in Neotropical Burseraceae XXV. Brittonia 70: 418–426.
Here we get authoritative confirmation that the recent lumping of Tetragastris (along with Crepidospermum, not represented in Costa Rica) into Protium by the GLOVAP crew [see under "Christenhusz," this column, in The Cutting Edge 25(2), Apr. 2018] was entirely justified on cladistic grounds. Of course, GLOVAP validated most of the required new combinations and nomina nova in Protium, leaving just a few tidbits for these authors (who were involved in the critical phylogenetic research). None of the nomenclatural novelties in this paper (including the reclassification of Crepidospermum and Tetragastris as sections of Protium) is of interest or concern to us, but perhaps one ought to have been: although the authors accept the nomen novum (Protium picramnioides Byng & Christenh.) validated by GLOVAP to replace Tetragastris panamensis (Engl.) Kuntze, the synonymy they provide suggests that the correct name for the sp. in question should instead be a combination in Protium (not yet available!) based on Tetragastris stevensonii Standl.
Debouck, D. G., R. Araya-Villalobos & N. Chaves-Barrantes. 2018. Phaseolus angucianae (Leguminosae: Phaseoleae), a new bean species from Fila Cruces of southeastern Costa Rica. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 12: 507–520.
Cerro Anguciana, the highest peak in the Costa Rican Fila Costeña, was first visited by us in late 1993 [see The Cutting Edge 1(1): 6, Jan. 1994 (not online!)]. Many exciting new records have accrued from those early collections, and finally the site has been immortalized in the epithet of a new sp.! Our initial collection of Phaseolus angucianae Debouck & Araya (Grayum et al. 10618) was shoehorned into P. talamancensis Debouck & Torres Gonz. for the purposes of the Manual Fabaceae treatment (2010), but here the two spp. are carefully distinguished (partly in a tabular format); in a similar manner, P. angucianae is contrasted with P. hygrophilus Debouck and P. oligospermus Piper. Unbeknownst to us, these authors returned to Anguciana (we did not know that anyone had been back) to find new populations of their bean. Sadly, they report deforestation at the site, which (as far as we know) remains unprotected. The Costa Rican sp. total for Phaseolus—including P. angucianae, the recently described P. hygrophilus [see under "Salcedo-Castaño," this column, in The Cutting Edge 18(4), Oct. 2011], and the recently discovered P. microcarpus Mart. [see under "Leaps and Bounds" in The Cutting Edge 20(2), Apr. 2013]—now stands at 13. These (exclusive of the cultivated P. acutifolius A. Gray) are enumerated by section (with vouchers cited) and keyed dichotomously. Missing in action (and not included in foregoing sp. total) is the enigmatic "Phaseolus albicarminus," a name bandied about recklessly by this crew on the Internet (see, e.g., Phaseolus albicarminus, a new and rare wild bean species from Costa Rica), as though it had been published effectively and validly, but which never has been, as far as we can tell (and its omission from this paper would seem to endorse our conclusion). The new sp. (Phaseolus angucianae) is depicted in a composite line drawing and (along with related spp.) color photos from life, and a distribution map is provided.
Delgado Junior, G. C., G. Staples & M. T. Buril. 2018. Typification of species names in Dichondra (Convolvulaceae). Taxon 67: 1020–1023.
Among the five names addressed in this contribution is Dichondra sericea Sw., the accepted name for the only sp. of its genus occurring in Costa Rica. It is lectotypified, with no evident consequences.
Egger, J. M. 2018. A new varietal combination in Castilleja arvensis (Orobanchaceae). Phytoneuron 2018-72: 1–8.
The novel recognition of a South American var. of Castilleja arvensis Schltdl. & Cham. condemns us to now qualify all Mesomerican material of the sp. as representing the autonymic var., and also requires that "Uru." be added to the geographic range of C. arvensis in the Manual Scrophulariaceae treatment (2015).
Endl, J., E. G. Achigan-Dako, A. K. Pandey, A. J. Monforte, B. Pico & H. Schaefer. 2018. Repeated domestication of melon (Cucumis melo) in Africa and Asia and a new close relative from India. Amer. J. Bot. 105: 1662–1671.
In the Manual Cucurbitaceae treatment (2010), Cucumis melo L. was said to be native to the "tróps. de Asia," and two subspp. were accepted: C. m. subsp. melo, comprising the cultivated melons, and C. m. subsp. agrestis (Naudin) Pangalo, of ruderal habitats. These molecular analyses suggest that, although the most widely grown cultivars of C. melo are indeed native to Asia, other races (here segregated in a new subsp.) are restricted to Africa. Furthermore, and as foreshadowed even by comments in the Manual: the distinction between the aforementioned two subspp. of C. melo, based mainly on ovarian trichomes, does not hold water, making C. m. subsp. agrestis "a polyphyletic taxon." Based on their results, these authors demote subsp. agrestis to the rank of forma and restrict it (as according to Naudin's original concept) to wild Asian populations. Thus reformulated, Cucumis melo subsp. melo f. agrestis (Naudin) W. J. de Wilde & Duyfjes is envisioned as "the ancestor of most of our modern market melon cultivars"; however, we do not learn exactly how it may be distinguished morphologically (from f. melo), nor whether it may be expected to occur in Costa Rica (though we think not). Perhaps a more rigorous taxonomic revision will be forthcoming somewhere down the line.
As an aside: the description of a new taxon in a supplemental, upaginated appendix, that cannot be cited uniquely without somehow specifying the invididual article, is truly infernal!
Garwood, N. C., K. Jordan, N. D. Flowers, A. M. Humphreys, S. J. Russell & K. M. Neubig. 2018. Trema domingensis rises like a phoenix from the ashes of Trema integerrima: a reassessment of the entire-leaved species of Neotropical Trema (Cannabaceae). J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 12: 555–577.
Trema integerrima (Beurl.) Standl. was reduced to "ashes" by the authors' discovery that its type (which apparently had never been examined by any prior researcher) is actually a specimen of Pouzolzia obliqua (Wedd.) Wedd. (Urticaceae)! Thus the former name becomes a synonym of the latter (which has priority by two years or so). A search for the earliest name applicable to the sp. heretofore known as T. integerrima revealed a surprising candidate: Trema domingensis Urb., used most recently for a sp. believed endemic to the Dominican Republic, known only by the type collection, and likely extinct! Hence the bit about rising "like a phoenix." With the help of some astute typification, the name T. domingensis is here repurposed for a sp. (the former "T. integerrima") that ranges from southern Mexico (Chiapas) to Bolivia, Venezuela, the Guayanas, and Brazil, as well as in the Antilles (both Greater and Lesser). The authors provide a revised and highly detailed description for T. domingensis, as well as distribution and phenology summaries, observations on reproductive biology, and specimen citations. Fortunately for us, this all comes down just in time to be accommodated in the Manual Cannabaceae treatment, slated for publication in our final volume.
Now for cynical observation number umpteen: as we would also have done, these authors adhered to the time-honored principles of determining the application of names by means of nomenclatural types (Principle II of the Code) and basing their nomenclature upon priority of publication (Principle III)—principles that, in recent years, have been abandoned, or at least seriously undermined, by the international plant-taxonomic community. Other workers might have treated this situation in a radically different manner, with equal justification under the Code: e.g., by proposing conservation of Trema integerrima (or its basionym) with a conserved type, so as to maintain the prevailing application of the name. Indeed, even now there is nothing to prevent others from pursuing that course of action. Whimsy, personal preference, politics, and committees now rule the roost, and the average, workaday plant taxonomist is rudderless.
Giraldo-Cañas, D. 2018. Circunscripción morfológica, diversidad, patrones de distribución y catálogo de la familia neotropical Marcgraviaceae (Ericales)/Morphological circumscription, diversity, distribution patterns, and checklist of the Neotropical family Maracgraviaceae (Ericales). Biota Colomb. 19: 49–69.
This author accepts eight genera and 136 spp. of Marcgraviaceae, vs. seven genera and 125 spp., as according to the Manual treatment (2007) by co-PI Barry Hammel (MO). To be fair, the eighth genus, Pseudosarcopera, was described (by the author of this paper) more than two months after the publication of Barry's chapter. The main part of this paper compiles all the usual statistics: Marcgraviaceae are most diverse at lower elevations (below 1500 m), and are best represented in Colombia (with 56 spp.), Brazil (39), Ecuador (36), and Peru (30). Endemism is highest in Brazil (with 15 endemic spp.) and Colombia (11). Tables are utilized to present all of this information in greater detail. Diagnostic family characters are discussed, and the genera are distinguished in a dichotomous (though non-indented) key and contrasted in table. All of these features are supplemented by numerous illustrations, mainly color photos from life, but also line drawings. The checklist (perhaps the part of greatest interest to us) is in the form of a supplemental appendix, available only online at:
This list accounts for both accepted names and synonyms, the former annotated to indicate altitudinal and geographic distribution. Although the author ascribes 29 spp. of Marcgraviaceae to Costa Rica—vs. 27 as according to the Manual treatment—just one additional sp. is assigned to the country without qualification in this checklist: Marcgravia crenata Poepp. ex Wittm. However, the author cites no Costa Rican vouchers, and we can find no other evidence for his claim, which we are not prepared to accept on faith alone. As for the other additional Costa Rican sp., our best guess is that it must be either the cultivated Norantea guianensis Aubl. (which did not figure into the Manual sp. count), or else one of two spp. here categorized (somewhat recklessly, perhaps) as "probablemente" (Marcgravia gentlei Lundell) or "posiblemente" (M. panamensis Dressler) present in the country.
Grayum, M. H. & M. Cedeño-Fonseca. 2018. Typification of Scindapsus dilaceratus (Araceae). Phytoneuron 2018-81: 1–4.
Scindapsus dilaceratus K. Koch & Sello is the basionym of Monstera dilacerata (K. Koch & Sello) K. Koch, a name that became quite widely known, over the course of more than a century, but for all the wrong reasons. In the first place, the concept denominated by M. dilacerata that was espoused in the most recent (1977) revision of Monstera encompassed no fewer than four distinct spp. (in Costa Rica alone!); and in the second place, new evidence brought to light during the past few decades has revealed that the type of S. dilaceratus—a specimen (prepared from a plant cultivated in Germany) destroyed at B during World War II—actually represented Epipremnum pinnatum (L.) Engl., an Old World sp.! On account of those considerations, the name Monstera dilacerata has been abandoned in recent neotropical floristic works, including Flora de Nicaragua (2001) and Manual Vol. 2 (2003). Nonetheless, the name Scindapsus dilaceratus has never been effectively typified, at least in the view of the authors of this paper, who proceed to neotypify it in such a way "as to guarantee its synonymy under Epipremnum pinnatum and banishment from Monstera." Now we can relax!
Hu, G.-X., A. Takano, B. T. Drew, E.-D. Liu, D. E. Soltis, P. S. Soltis, H. Peng & C.-L. Xiang. 2018. Phylogeny and staminal evolution of Salvia (Lamiaceae, Nepetoideae) in East Asia. Ann. Bot. (Oxford) 122: 649–668.
The nuts and bolts of this contribution have nothing to do with us, so we will confine our reporting to its principal overarching conclusion: "This study supports the adoption of a broadly defined Salvia..." That comes as little surprise, given that two of these authors were involved in a previous initiative to pursue the same agenda [see under "Drew," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(2), Apr. 2017], but still we are gratified. For the inevitable splitters' gambit, see under "Will," this column, in The Cutting Edge 25(2), Apr. 2018.
Jiménez-Mejías, P. & L. J. Dorr. 2018. The quinquín sedges: taxonomy of the Carex phleoides group (Cyperaceae). Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 103: 591–603.
Lauro rides again! Well, parenthetically, at least, and with a slight demotion. Not long ago, the results of molecular analyses revealed Uncinia to be nested within Carex, causing the three affected spp. in Costa Rica to be rebranded [see under "Global Carex Group," this column, in The Cutting Edge 22(4), Oct. 2015] as Carex hamata Sw., C. firmula (Kük.) J. R. Starr (for the former Uncinia tenuis Poepp. ex Kunth), and C. koyamae (Gómez-Laur.) J. R. Starr. Shortly thereafter, Carex koyamae was deemed conspecific with the widespread C. phleoides Cav. [see under "Jiménez-Mejías," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(1), Jan. 2017], which obviously held the trump card with respect to priority. But now we get a semi-reprieve, as these authors have seen fit to recognize two subspp. of Carex phleoides: the autonymic one, restricted to Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina, and C. p. subsp. koyamae (Gómez-Laur.) Jim.-Mejías (comb. nov.), which ranges (a bit disjunctly) from Mexico and Costa Rica to Bolivia and Venezuela. A dichotomous and indented "identification key" to the taxa accepted by the authors in the study group (including two other spp. of no concern to us) clarifies that C. phleoides subsp. koyamae differs from subsp. phleoides by its generally larger female glumes and perigynia (here inadvisedly termed "utricles"). The "utricles" of all the taxa are compared in a color photo.
Judd, W. S., G. M. Ionta & L. C. Majure. 2018. Taxonomic studies in the Miconieae (Melastomataceae). XIV. Species of Miconia section Sagraea that occur in the Greater Antilles and additionally in the Lesser Antilles and/or continental regions. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 12: 531–547.
——, ——, —— & F. A. Michelangeli. 2018. Taxonomic and nomenclatural notes on Miconia crenata and related species (Melastomataceae: Miconieae) in the Greater Antilles. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 12: 521–529.
The formal transfer of spp. formerly included in Clidemia (and other genera) to Miconia began several years ago [see, e.g., under "Gamba," this column, in The Cutting Edge 22(1), Jan. 2015], and continues at an agonizing pace. The two papers reviewed in this space are concerned primarily with Antillean taxa, but it turns out that four of the spp. addressed occur also in Costa Rica. The first paper (on sect. Sagraea) proposes (among other things) a new combination in Miconia based on Clidemia septuplinervia Cogn. However, we would contend that Miconia septuplinervia (Cogn.) Judd & Ionta is, effectively, an illegitimate later homonym of M. septuplinervis Pittier (1924); in that case, a different name would be needed, which (according to the authors' synonymy) figures to be a combination (as yet unpublished) in Miconia based on Ossaea trichocalyx Pittier. In the second paper, three new combinations are validated for former Clidemia spp. that occur in Costa Rica, and a fourth is revealed. The three newly validated names are: Miconia dependens (D. Don) Judd & Majure, which replaces Clidemia capitellata (Bonpl.) D. Don; and Miconia octona (Bonpl.) Judd & Majure and M. strigillosa (Sw.) Judd & Ionta, which replace the two names in Clidemia that share their epithets. Finally, Miconia crenata (Vahl) Michelang., though published previously, is here revealed (at least to us!) as the correct name in Miconia for the former Clidemia hirta (L.) D. Don. These papers offer various other useful features, including synonymy, several lectotype designations (one for the genus name Clidemia), and distribution summaries.
Lourenço, A. R. L., C. Parra-O., E. Sánchez-Chávez & E. Lucas. 2018. New combinations and names for continental American Calyptranthes (Myrtaceae: Myrcia s.l.). Phytotaxa 373: 71–85.
It has been known since at least 2011 that Calyptranthes and Marlierea are both nested within Myrcia, and the three genera were effectively combined (under the name Myrcia) last year [see under "Lucas," this column, in The Cutting Edge 25(3), Jul. 2018]. Nevertheless, until now, most of the requisite new combinations had not been validated. This was due mainly to an an ill-advised (we would say!) proposal to conserve Myrcia over the prior genus name Calyptranthes, which was not well received by the relevant committee and was only approved on the second try [see under "Wilson," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(2), Apr. 2017]. Now that the way is clear, we receive an avalanche of new combinations and nomina nova in Myrcia for names in Calyptranthes. For Costa Rica, these are: Myrcia chytraculia (L.) A. R. Lourenço & E. Lucas; M. monteverdensis (P. E. Sánchez) A. R. Lourenço & Sánchez-Cháv.; M. neolucida A. R. Lourenço & E. Lucas and M. neopallens A. R. Lourenço & E. Lucas (unimaginative nomina nova based on Calyptranthes lucida Mart. ex DC. and C. pallens Griseb., respectively); and M. pittieri (Standl.) A. R. Lourenço & Sánchez-Cháv. Mysteriously missing in action is any name in Myrcia that seems applicable to Calyptranthes hylobates Standl. ex Amshoff, as well as (more understandably) combinations for C. chytraculia var. americana McVaugh (infrageneric taxa being generally ignored in contributions of this sort) and C. guanacastensis N. Zamora, S. Y. Kim & R. Espinoza (published only in 2016). On the other side of the ledger: we unexpectedly receive the new combination Myrcia mesoamericana (P. E. Sánchez) A. R. Lourenço & Sánchez-Cháv. for the only sp. of Marlierea that had been ascribed to Costa Rica, M. mesoamericana P. E. Sánchez, which (the authors contend) ought to have been classed in Calyptranthes.
Incidentally: we suspect that these authors were laboring under the false (yet widespread) assumption that nomina nova carry the priority of their replaced name. For example, Calyptranthes pallens has at least two widely accepted synonyms at sp. rank with epithets available in Myrcia. In the same vein, we wonder whether C. hylobates may be hiding behind Myrcia tenuiflora A. R. Lourenço & E. Lucas, a nomen novum based on Calyptranthes bipennis O. Berg, to which C. hylobates was said to be "cercanamente relacionada y...posiblemente coespecífica" in Flora mesoamericana Vol. 4(1) (2009). If that is the case, then the correct name in Myrcia for the sp. in question would be a combination based on Calyptranthes hylobates. The authors do not indicate heterotypic synonyms, so our suspicions cannot be confirmed..
Mabberley, D. J. 2017. A note on the tonka bean and William Forsyth junior's 'A botanical nomenclator' (1794). Blumea 62: 87–89.
More crate-digging by the author of this paper [see, e.g., under "Mabberley," this column, in The Cutting Edge 25(2), Apr. 2018] dredges up obscure and forgotten names, validated or cited in the volume mentioned in the title, that ought to have been indexed centuries ago. Two of these require changes in authority citations for names mentioned in the Manual. Manettia coccinea (Aubl.) Willd. was cited in Manual Vol. 7 (2014) as a synonym of M. reclinata L. (Rubiaceae), but more recently has been accepted by Manual Rubiaceae author coordinator Charlotte M. Taylor (MO) for a distinct sp. that also occurs in Costa Rica [see under "Annotate Your Copy" in The Cutting Edge 23(1), Jan. 2016]. It must now become Manettia coccinea (Aubl.) Forsyth f. Similarly, the name Allophylus cobbe (L.) Raeusch., cited in Manual Vol. 8 (2015) as a "sensu" synonym under three different spp. of Allophylus (Sapindaceae), is now correctly A. cobbe (L.) Forsyth f.
Moran, R. C. & P. H. Labiak. 2018. Notes on three species of Campyloneurum (Polypodiaceae) from Costa Rica and Panama. Brittonia 70: 383–393.
The title of this article actually understates its impact, because the authors' conclusions have consequences (ranging from minor to significant) for four spp. in our region, with respect to their treatment in Vol. 1 (1995) of Flora mesoamericana. Changes in nomenclature and/or geographic distribution are mandated, to varying degrees. Least affected is Campyloneurum falcoideum (Kuhn ex Hieron.) M. Mey. ex Lellinger, which retains its name; however, it acquires a new synonym, C. wercklei (Christ) Lellinger, subordinated mistakenly to C. sphenodes (Kunze ex Klotzsch) Fée in Flora mesoamericana. Moreover, the rejection of past reports from South America means that C. falcoideum is now restricted to Mesoamerica (Costa Rica and Panama). Similarly restricted to Costa Rica and Panama is the sp. called Campyloneurum coarctatum (Kunze) Fée in Flora mesoamericana; however, in this case, the excluded South American material entrains the type, prompting the validation of a new sp. name, Campyloneurum concavum R. C. Moran & Labiak, for the Meosamerican plants. We had always considered Campyloneurum sublucidum (Christ) Ching to be one of the more distinctive spp. in an otherwise relatively nondescript genus, on account of its semiglossy foliage. However, it turns out that this useful field character is "lost upon drying," and as a result, herbarium specimens have often been misinterpreted. One such specimen is the type of C. sphenodes, the accepted name for a different sp. according to Flora meosamericana (and other sources), but here revealed as conspecific with C. sublucidum; unfortunately (we would submit), C. sphenodes is the older name, and must thus replace the more evocative C. sublucidum. The fourth and final sp. affected by all of this is the one known by the name Campyloneurum sphenodes in Flora mesoamericana. Deprived now of both its accepted name and only heterotypic synonym (C. wercklei), this entity is now apparently in limbo, with no available name. Reading somewhat between the lines, we glean that the authors "suspect [it] is undescribed." Perhaps full resolution will be forthcoming in the not-too-distant future.
Nazre, M., M. F. Newman, R. T. Pennington & D. J. Middleton. 2018. Taxonomic revision of Garcinia section Garcinia (Clusiaceae). Phytotaxa 373: 1–52.
This revision of a tropical Asian taxon of 13 spp. would not concern us, were it not for the fact that one of its members is Garcinia mangostana L., the cultivated mangosteen (Mangostán), which is sparingly grown in Costa Rica and was treated fully in the Manual Clusiaceae account by co-PI Barry Hammel (MO). And there are actually repercussions for G. mangostana: the novel recognition of two wild-occurring vars. requires that most cultivated material (and certainly all of it in the New World) be qualified as belonging to the autonymic var. We will skip our customary résumé for this revision, except to say that the three G. mangostana vars. (which "can only be distinguished with fertile and mature material") are distinguished in a dichotomous key.
Olson, S. L. & C. S. Stephens. 2018. Alwyn Hasso von Wedel (1873–1957): bird and plant collector on the Caribbean coast of Panama. Arch. Nat. Hist. 45: 317–334.
Hasso von Wedel lived, worked, and collected plants in Panama, but botanists working on the Costa Rican flora will instantly recognize his surname from the various taxa (10 are listed in this paper) baptized in his honor. Because von Wedel was based mainly in Prov. Bocas del Toro, those taxa are mostly restricted to Atlantic lowland regions. Born in South Africa to a Prussian officer and a local mother "of English descent," von Wedel worked for a time in New York, before settling in Panama ca. 1898. There, he appears to have supported himself mainly through photography (postcards were a specialty) and the sale of natural history specimens, and "was never comfortable financially." Described as "a slight wiry person" (weighing just 100 lbs.), von Wedel never married, but sired a daughter out of wedlock, from whom he was estranged for life. It was a rather sad and lonely life, by all accounts, punctuated by persecution and even impoundment in detention camps, due to his German ancestry. Despite the familiarity of his name in botanical circles, von Wedel collected plants only during the period 1938–1941, having been stimulated by a visit from Robert E. Woodson, Jr. (MO). He spent considerably more time collecting birds, beginning ca. 1926 (despite which just one bird taxon, and that a subsp., was named for him). These and many other details can be gleaned from this welcome contribution, illustrated with several fine and rare photos.
Pirie, M. D., L. W. Chatrou & P. J. M. Maas. 2018. A taxonomic revision of the Neotropical genus Cremastosperma (Annonaceae), including five new species. PhytoKeys 112: 1–141.
Finally! After nearly 35 years, we have a name, Cremastosperma osicola Pirie & Chatrou, for the lone Costa Rican sp. of its genus! We were evidently the first to encounter this sp., in 1984 (Schatz et al. 1002), at which time it was recognized by principal collector George Schatz (MO) as potentially undescribed and christened informally with the name "Unonopsis ocoteifolia." That would have been an appropriate epithet even in the genus Cremastosperma (to which George quickly realized the sp. rightly belonged), but it was never to be. The original collection was fruiting, and years would pass before flowering material became available. In 2005, when the first incarnation of this revision appeared in the effectively published Ph.D. dissertation of its first author [see The Cutting Edge 13(3): 11, Jul. 2006], flowers still has not been seen, and our new sp. was treated somewhat disappointingly as "Cremastosperma spec. A" (although it was accepted as an apparently distinct entity on the basis of its fruits). Even now, flowering material must be exceedingly scarce in the world's herbaria; as far as we can tell, none of the specimens of Cremastosperma osicola cited in this new revision are flowering, with the possible (though, we think, unlikely) exception of the type. Nonetheless, flowers are described, at least partly on the basis of two published color photos for which no voucher is cited. We were able to confirm that these photos are vouchered by Aguilar 12897 (NY?), as according to the on-line Vascular Plants of the Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica [see, e.g., under "Cornejo," this column, in The Cutting Edge 19(3), Jul. 2012], which also features records for several other collections of this sp. by Osa resident Reinaldo Aguilar that are not cited in this revision. From these records, the flowering phenology of C. osicola (not indicated in the revision) may be specified as "feb., mar." Getting back to basics: the new sp. is endemic to Costa Rica, and the Península de Osa, and is most similar to the Colombian Cremastosperma pacificum R. E. Fr. (although the name C. bullatum Pirie has been applied to at least one Costa Rican specimen). The authors recognize a generic total of 34 spp., of which four others are described as new. Dichotomous (though non-indented) keys distinguish Cremastosperma from two related genera, and its spp. from one another, and a so-called "synoptic key" supplements the latter feature. A technical description and distribution summary (with map) for the genus are followed by the alphabetically ordered sp. entries, which include synonymy and typology, descriptions, distribution and phenology summaries, notes, conservation assessments, specimen citations (with full data in a supplemental file for which a link is provided), and distribution maps, and followed in turn by sections on "Dubious" and "Excluded species" and indices to exsiccatae and scientific names. The illustrated introductory part addresses mainly phylogeny, taxonomic history, endemism, conservation status, and biogeography. All the spp. are illustrated with line drawings or color photos of herbarium specimens, and sometimes also with color photos from life.
Pupulin, F. 2016. Phragmipedium humboldtii (Warsz.) J. T. Atwood & Dressler. On the correct name for the Central American long-petaled Phragmipedium; again. Orchids (West Palm Beach) 85: 148–153.
Somehow we overlooked this article, and have since gone on our merry way believing that Guido Braem's [see this column in The Cutting Edge 21(3), Jul. 2014] was the last word on this contentious subject and that, as a consequence, the correct name for the sp. of the title should be (according to our conclusion) Phragmipedium warscewiczii (Rchb. f.) Christenson. Our conclusion accepted Braem's pronouncement that Cypripedium humboldtii (the ostensible basionym of Phragmipedium humboldii) was effectively a nomen nudum, not described in any way by either Reichenbach or Warszewicz, but rejected Braem's contention that Selenipedium warscewiczii Rchb. f. was also a nomen nudum. The author of this paper, adamant and assured as always, reiterates and stands by his previous conclusion that the name Cypripedium humboldtii Warsz. (in Rchb. f.) was indeed validated by means of a brief description. And there seems no way of getting around it: even though he did not himself accept the sp., "Reichenbach published in 1852 the name Cypripedium humboldtii, ascribing it to Warszewicz," and "in the same paper he also published a short description validating the name, ascribing the description to Warszewicz." It seems counterintuitive that, in the process of rejecting a proposed sp., an author (Reichenbach) might unwittingly mediate the validation of its name, but that appears to be the case here. And while the Code (Art. 36.1) requires that a name be accepted by its author, that author, in the present situation, would be Warszewicz (who clearly accepted the name), not Reichenbach. We wonder how often this "Trojan horse" scenario may have played out elsewhere and gone unnoticed! Bottom line: until and unless this most recent salvo is effectively countered by Braem or someone else, we will follow Pupulin and accept the name given in the title of his paper (which differs from that used in the Manual only by the deletion of "ex Rchb. f." from the parenthetical author citation) as correct.
—— & M. Díaz-Morales. 2018. On the meaning of Cypripedium ×grande (Orchidaceae) and its taxonomic history, with a new name for the nothospecies occurring in Costa Rica and Panama. Phytotaxa 382: 167–181.
Phragmipedium ×grande (Rchb. f.) Rolfe (a name not mentioned in the Manual Orchidaceae treatment) has been regarded as a hybrid between P. humboldtii (Warsz.) J. T. Atwood & Dressler (see the foregoing entry!) and P. longifolium (Warsz. & Rchb. f.) Rolfe, the only two spp. of its genus occurring in Costa Rica. However, these authors argue that it should instead be treated (at least provisionally) as an artificial hybrid between P. longifolium and the allopatric ("endemic to Peru and Bolivia") P. caudatum (Lindl.) Rolfe. That said, natural hybrids between P. humboldtii and P. longifolium really do exist, and have been reported from Panama and ("here for the first time") Costa Rica. The last-mentioned hybrids now lack a name (with P. ×grande assigned to a different hybrid), a situation that is here remedied with the validation (perhaps!) of Phragmipedium ×talamancanum Pupulin & M. Díaz. "According to a conversation" that must have taken place long ago, the cultivated material of this hybrid here ascribed to Costa Rica originated "close to the Panamanian border," apparently in the Coto Brus region. Horticulturists! It is unclear whether any actual herbarium specimens of this entity exist (the element designated as type may be a living plant in cultivation). The new hybrid is illustrated with an excellent composite line-drawing and various color photos from life. As we have pointed out in the past: hybrids do not figure into our "running count" of new orchid spp. described from Costa Rica.
Quedensley, T. S., M. Gruenstaeudl & R. K. Jansen. 2018. Phylogenetic relationships of the Mexican tussilaginoid genera (Asteraceae: Senecioneae). J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 12: 481–498.
Because the study genera (all Senecio segregates to us) are centered in Mexico and northern Mesoamerica, we will confine our remarks to the only two that we believe to be represented in Costa Rica: Roldana (with two spp. in the country) and Telanthophora (with just one). As it turns out, the potential fates of those two genera are intertwined: according to the results of these ribosomal DNA sequence analyses, Telanthophora is deeply nested (along with various other elements) within a paraphyletic Roldana. Because some relationships lack support, the authors do not venture a taxonomic resolution, pending "a thorough phylogenetic survey" of the group. Nonetheless, based on the cladogams presented in this paper, we may speculate that, regardless of the final resolution, there will be nomenclatural consequences for Costa Rican floristics: lumping Telanthophora in Roldana would necessitate a name change for our T. grandifolia (Less.) H. Rob. & Brettell, while splitting Roldana in such a way as to maintain Telanthophora would provoke the ouster from the former genus of at least one of its Costa Rican members, R. heterogama (Benth.) H. Rob. & Brettell, which occupies a clade far removed from that of the type sp. (R. lobata La Llave). The other Costa Rican Roldana, R. scandens Poveda & Kappelle, was not included in the study.
Riina, R., P. E. Berry, R. S. Secco, W. Meier & M. B. R. Caruzo. 2018. Reassessment of Croton sect. Cleodora (Euphorbiaceae) points to the Amazon basin as its main center of diversity. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 103: 330–349.
The mainly South American Croton sect. Cleodora (Klotzsch) Baill. was recently revised [see under "Caruzo," this column, in The Cutting Edge 20(4), Oct. 2013], with 18 spp. recognized. The present contribution pads that total to 27, with the description of six new spp. and the reclassification of three others. None of the nine additions pertains directly to Costa Rica, but one of the sectional transfers is intriguing to us: Croton santaritensis Huft, previously deemed a Panamanian endemic, is here reported also from southern Mexico (Tabasco), suggesting that it may be expected in the intervening countries. A revised key (dichotomous and indented) to all the spp. of the section is provided, and Croton santaritensis (among other spp.) is illustrated, with black-and-white photos of living material. Otherwise, the subject matter of this paper lies mainly outside our sphere of interest.
Rodríguez Caballero, R. L. 2018. Orquídeas en acuarela: la obra inédita de Rafael Lucas Rodríguez Caballero. Edit. Tecnol. Costa Rica, Cartago, Costa Rica. 1005 pp.
When first resident in Costa Rica, we learned the indigenous orchid genera (well, those that were accepted at that time!) primarily from the book Géneros de orquídeas de Costa Rica (Rodríguez Caballero et al., 1986), a relatively slim (334 pp.) and flexible volume presenting, for each genus, a detailed description and distribution summary, accompanied by a full-page reproduction (or, in some cases, two or more) of a superb watercolor by the late Costa Rican biologist Rafael Lucas Rodríguez Caballero (1915–1981). Here we have that book on steroids. The page total noted above does not convey an adequate picture of the size of this volume: amply formated and printed on heavy, high-quality paper, this puppy weighs a ton! Not the sort of thing you'd want to cart around in your Volkswagen, let alone your backpack. Whereas the earlier publication presented a judicious selection of 145 watercolors, this behemoth features 1057 of Rodríguez's renderings (though some are just line drawings, or only partly colored, and not all are accorded a full page); moreover, the obverse sides of most of the plates (with handwritten notes and, irregularly, localities, voucher citations, dates, sketches, etc.) are pictured (also in color, though reduced in size) in a separate section at the end of the volume. The bilingual introductory part includes a brief biography of Rodríguez and an explanation of the content. Although the plates were not subjected to digital restoration, the reproductions are, generally speaking, magnificent. The plates are ordered alphabetically, by genus and species, according to the names that were used by Rodríguez himself. And therein lies a weakness: as admitted in the prefatory pages of this volume, Rodríguez "was not a taxonomist, and...sometimes struggled to identify the species he was studying." Whereas his identifications were rectified and updated by the coauthors of the earlier publication, the same was not done for this new volume, compromising its utility for non-specialist taxonomists. That said, it is great to have all of these watercolors published and accessible (at least, to some of us!). We are uncertain as to whether this new volume includes the plates that were published in the earlier, smaller book; certain passages (including the title!) suggest otherwise, but we thought we recognized some of the plates (though we were not able to compare the two works side by side, and may well be mistaken). It seems that this massive tome of watercolors was published simultaneously with a biography of Rodríguez Caballero, which we have not seen as yet. As to cost and availability: judging from the size of the watercolor volume, we would have expected the price to be astronomical, and the press-run to be extremely limited. The latter may indeed be true, but not, apparently, the former: according to information gleaned from the Internet, both books (the watercolors plus the biography) are (or at least, were) available, in a promotional offer, for 40,000 colones, or approximately $66 at the prevailing rate of exchange—a veritable steal!
Samper-Villarreal, J., G. Rojas-Ortega, J. L. Vega-Alpízar & J. Cortés. 2018. New sighting of seagrasses in the Eastern Tropical Pacific (Bahía Potrero, Costa Rica). Aquatic Bot. 151: 25–2.
Two seagrass spp., Halodule beaudettei (Hartog) Hartog (Cymodoceaceae) and Halophila baillonis Asch. (Hydrocharitaceae), were found by the authors in the study region, which lies to the south of Playa del Coco on what we would call the northern Península de Nicoya. While both spp. have been reported previously from Costa Rica [see especially under "Samper-Villarreal," this column, in The Cutting Edge 25(3), Jul. 2018], it is always good to have more information on these elusive plants, and we may (finally!) have an actual Costa Rican voucher for Halodule beaudettei; in any event, the authors claim that "a dried herbarium sample of each species was deposited at the Herbario Nacional de Costa Rica," even if they neglect to actually cite said vouchers! We won't bother looking for them any time soon...
Takawira-Nyenya, R., L. Mucina, W. M. Cardinal-McTeague & K. R. Thiele. 2018. Sansevieria (Asparagaceae, Nolinoideae) is a herbaceous clade within Dracaena: inference from non-coding plastid and nuclear DNA sequence data. Phytotaxa 376: 254–276.
According to these analyses, Sansevieria (with a single sp. cultivated and sparingly naturalized in Costa Rica) is diphyletic, with both of its clades embedded in a paraphyletic Dracaena. Thus, the authors "support...a broadened circumscription of Dracaena that includes Sansevieria." The notion of merging those two genera has actually been floating around for quite some time now; indeed, the combination in Dracaena for Sansevieria trifasciata Prain (the Costa Rican representative of Sansevieria) was validated a few years back [see under "Mabberley," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(4), Oct. 2017], and for most remaining Sansevieria names by the GLOVAP team just last year [see under "Christenhusz," this column, in The Cutting Edge 25(2), Apr. 2018]. That leaves just a few nomenclatural crumbs (none pertaining to Costa Rica) for the authors of this paper, which presents the most solid evidence to date in support of the generic merger. However, they also contribute a revised genus description for the recircumscribed Dracaena.
Van Welzen, P. C. & F. J. Fernández-Casas. 2017. Cnidoscolus (Euphorbiaceae) escaped in Malesia? Blumea 62: 84–86.
Well, it "likely did not escape" (as the authors conclude), and has not yet been found in "Malesia," at least according to our understanding of that term. Rather, it has been introduced in the Philippines (which apparently count as "Malesia," for Flora malesiana purposes), where it has twice been collected "in the wild," under somewhat ambiguous circumstances. "It" is, more specifically, Cnidoscolus aconitifolius (Mill.) I. M. Johnst., native to the Neotropics (at least in the Mesoamerican region); so simply add "introd. Filip." to the Manual distribution summary for that sp. The Philippine plants correspond to the cultivar commonly called (at least in the New World) Chaya, and known for a spell as Cnidoscolus chayamansa McVaugh. The Manual Euphorbiaceae treatment (2010) synonymized C. chayamansa under the autonymic subsp. of C. aconitifolius (in agreement with this paper), recognizing Chaya as a cultivar under the apparently informal name "Redonda" (as according to a source not cited in this paper). However, according to these authors, the correct name for the cultivar in question is actually "cv. 'Chayamansa' (McVaugh) Breckon." As we know next to nothing about the nomenclature of cultivars (and care even less), we are more than happy to follow them on this.
Yesilyurt, J. C. 2018. Typifications of thirty-three names and other nomenclatural clarifications referred to Doryopteris and Lytoneuron (Pteridaceae). Phytotaxa 376: 138–149.
Lectotypification madness continues to grip the world! Here, lectotypes are designated for (among other things) three synonyms of Doryopteris nobilis (T. Moore) C. Chr. and one of D. palmata (Willd.) J. Sm., the two accepted spp. of the study genera that occur in Costa Rica. This activity would appear to have no effect on the prevailing application of names. One neo- and two epitypifications are also effected (in addition to 26 additional lectotypifications), for names that do not concern us. Better that the author should publish her 2004 University of Reading Ph.D. dissertation, a systematic revision of Doryopteris, in which the relevant entries of the present article would have been featured more appropriately.
Yu, X.-Q., L.-M. Gao, D. E. Soltis, P. S. Soltis, J.-B. Yang, L. Fang, S.-X. Yang & D.-Z. Li. 2017. Insights into the historical assembly of East Asian subtropical evergreen broadleaved forests revealed by the temporal history of the tea family. New Phytol. 215: 1235–1248.
Among other things, this study provides support for earlier suggestions [see, e.g., The Cutting Edge 9(1): 10, Jan. 2002] that the genus Gordonia, in the prevailing sense (i.e., that of the Manual) is not monophyletic. Indeed, this situation was already alluded to in the discussion under Gordonia in the Manual Theaceae treatment (2015) by Quírico Jiménez. We are pretty sure this means (or will ultimately require) that, of the two Costa Rican spp. involved, Gordonia brenesii (Standl.) Q. Jiménez will stay put, while G. fruticosa (Schrad.) H. Keng will wind up in Laplacea (lately deemed a synonym of Gordonia).