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Volume XXV, Number 3, July 2018
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Aona, L. Y. S., V. Bittrich & M. C. E. Amaral. 2018. Taxonomic and nomenclatural notes on Brazilian Dichorisandra (Commelinaceae). Phytotaxa 348: 1–13.
This is partly just another lectotypification-fest, though many new synonymies are also proposed. For us, the only noteworthy developments concern Dichorisandra hexandra (Aubl.) C. B. Clarke (an abundant native sp. in Costa Rica) and D. thyrsiflora J. C. Mikan (sparingly cultivated): new synonyms are indicated for each (though the authors employ the "syn. nov." claim rather liberally), along with new lectotype designations for many of the latter. As far as we can tell, these actions have no repercussions for the Manual Commelinaceae treatment (2003).
Chen Z.-X., S. R. Downie & Wang Q.-Z. 2018. Review on the taxonomy, origin, and evolution of Sanicula (Umbelliferae). Pl. Sci. J. 36: 136–143.
According to the English abstract, "molecular phylogenetic analysis shows that [Sanicula] may not be monophyletic." The type sp. is European, which could spell trouble somewhere down the line for the sole Costa Rican member of the genus, Sanicula liberta Cham. & Schltdl.; however, the rest of this is in Chinese, and there are no cladograms, so we are toast!
Costa-Silva, R. & M. F. Agra. 2018. Lectotypifications of six taxa in Lycianthes (Solanaceae). Phytotaxa 348: 297–300.
Note to the authors, and (more especially) the editors of Phytotaxa: taxa are not typified. Taxa are classified and named. Names are typified. We've noted this error in previous and subsequent issues of this journal (see also the second entry under "Hassemer," this column). That said, the only mildly consequential innovation for us in this paper is the new lectotypification of Lycianthes ulei Bitter, ostensibly a synonym of L. amatitlanensis (J. M. Coult. & Donn. Sm.) Bitter (which occurs in Costa Rica). Also worth noting is the authors' contention (based on their "examination of the types") that L. amatitlanensis is distinct from L. inaequilatera (Rusby) Bitter. As mentioned in the Manual discussion of the former sp., the prior L. inaequilatera has been promoted by some authors as the accepted name for the sp. represented in Costa Rica. However, the jury is perhaps still out on this issue, because the authors of this paper neglect to explicitly cite the "type" material that was studied, and the basionyms of L. amatitlanensis and L. inaequilatera were not lectotypified until after the publication of this paper (in the very next issue of Phytotaxa; see under "Dean," this column).
Dalström, S. & W. E. Higgins. 2018. Die Wiederherstellung einer monophyletischen Gattung Odontoglossum. Orchidee (Hamburg) 69: 94–101.
This has every appearance of a popular, German-language condensation (featuring numerous color photos) of a more scientifically rigorous article by the same authors in which the agenda of this paper was implemented nomenclaturally [without further ado, see under "Dalström," this column, in The Cutting Edge 23(4), Oct. 2016]. It never hurts to rally the troops!
Davidse, G., M. Sousa S., S. Knapp & F. Chiang (editores generales). 2018. Flora mesoamericana. Vol. 5, Parte 2. Asteraceae. Univ. Nac. Autón. México, Mexico City/Missouri Bot. Gard., St. Louis/Nat. Hist. Mus. (London). 608 pp.
The sixth installment of Flora mesoamericana to be published, of a projected total of 13, is the first to deal with a single family. This landmark contribution, helmed by MO curator John F. Pruski, treats a total of 1072 spp. of Asteraceae in 282 genera. According to the dust jacket, the largest genera in the region are Ageratina (with 57 spp.), Verbesina (38 spp.), and Fleischmannia (36 spp.)—not what we would have expected, but splitting has vanquished erstwhile behemoths such as Eupatorium, Senecio, and Vernonia. A pair of tables at the head of the family inform us that Costa Rica can boast three endemic genera (Charadranaetes, Ortizacalia, and Standleyanthus), as well as 64 endemic spp. (second in the region to Guatemala, with 68). The genera and the sp. entries are ordered alphabetically within each of 23 tribes, keyed at the outset. Keys to genera are provided under the tribal headings. Asteraceae remain to be published in the Manual, precluding our usual comparison of the two versions. Nonetheless, we did note in passing one minor discrepancy: Sciadocephala dressleri R. M. King & H Rob., "esperada en Costa Rica" but vouchered in this volume only from Panama, was actually discovered and collected in Tiquicia more than 20 years ago [see The Cutting Edge 2(3): 3, Jul. 1995]. And, of course, obsolesence—inevitable for all floristic compilations—has already begun to seep in: see under "Leaps and Bounds," in our last issue, where the report of two new Asteraceae spp. for Costa Rica reduces correspondingly the total number of endemic spp. (31) attributed to Panama in this volume. A "Glosario para Asteraceae" precedes the index at the end of this book.
Dean, E. A. & M. Reyes. 2018. Lectotypification of names in the genus Lycianthes (Solanaceae). Phytotaxa 349: 39–46.
Lectotypes are newly designated for the following names applicable (at least potentially) to spp. occurring in Costa Rica: Solanum amatitlanense J. M. Coult. & Donn. Sm. [the basionym of Lycianthes amatitlanensis (J. M. Coult. & Donn. Sm.) Bitter]; Lycianthes ferruginea Bitter and L. f. var. firmior Bitter (the former an accepted name in the Manual, the latter cited as a synonym thereof in the Manual, but not yet firmly embraced as such by these authors); Lycianthes furcatistellata Bitter (an accepted name in the Manual); L. heteroclita (Sendtn.) Bitter var. gracilis Bitter (not mentioned in the Manual, but based partly on Costa Rican material and meriting "further study," according to these authors); Bassovia inaequilatera Rusby, the basionym of Lycianthes inaequilatera (Rusby) Bitter (mentioned in the Manual as perhaps an older name for L. amatitlanensis, a possibility accepted by these authors as well; but see under "Costa-Silva," this column, for a different, if questionably based, opinion); Lycianthes multiflora Bitter and L. m. var. plicitotomentosa Bitter (the former an accepted name in the Manual, the latter cited as a synonym thereof); and Lycianthes nitida Bitter (an accepted name in the Manual). As far as we can determine, none of these new lectotype designations necessitates a change in the Manual Lycianthes account by Lynn Bohs (UT).
Dupin, J. & S. D. Smith. 2018. Phylogenetics of Datureae (Solanaceae), including description of the new genus Trompettia and re-circumscription of the tribe. Taxon 67: 359–375.
The new genus of the title accommodates a single, Bolivian sp. that was misplaced and proved basal to the clade harboring Brugmansia and Datura. The two last-mentioned genera, both occurring (mainly as cultivated or escaped) in Costa Rica and treated in Manual Vol. 8, "are monophyletic sister taxa," consistent with historical notions that have effectively deferred the decision of whether to recognize them separately to a coin flip. The feature of greatest interest to us is a "Taxonomic key of worldwide diversity in Datureae" (at the end of the paper), which includes all the infrageneric taxa accepted by the authors [though we are mystified as to why Datura leichhardtii F. Muell. ex Benth. var. pruinosa (Greenm.) A. S. Barclay ex K. Hammer is keyed, but not its autonymic counterpart].
Estrella, M., F. Forest, B. Klitgård, G. P. Lewis, B. A. Mackinder, L. P. Queiroz, J. J. Wieringa & A. Bruneau. 2018. A new phylogeny-based tribal classification of subfamily Detarioideae, an early branching clade of florally diverse tropical arborescent legumes. Sci. Rep. 8(6884): 1–14.
The tribal classification is of no concern to us, but we are mildly intrigued by some other results bearing on genera of Fabaceae represented in Costa Rica: Cynometra is "clearly polyphyletic," as according to previous studies [see, e.g., under "Radosavljevic," this column, in our last issue], and Copaifera may be as well. Crudia is "poorly supported" as monophyletic, and Hymenaea "may be nested within a paraphyletic Guibourtia (though Hymenaea is the older name, so no major worries there). And finally, these analyses are "in accordance with" the "broadly defined Prioria" (including several Old World genera) envisioned by Breteler [see The Cutting Edge 7(2): 6, Apr. 2000], but not embraced in the Manual Fabaceae treatment (2010) by co-PI Nelson Zamora.
Fiaschi, P. & G. M. Plunkett. 2018. Revision of the Didymopanax group of Neotropical Schefflera (Araliaceae). Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 103: 24–105.
The authors offer "the first comprehensive taxonomic revision of species belonging to the Didymopanax group of Neotropical Schefflera," a statement that will require some elaboration for non-specialists. In the first place, the so-called "Didymopanax group," though "highly coherent both morphologically and geographically, and which molecular evidence suggests is monophyletic," does not correspond to the "extremely heterogeneous" generic concept associated with the name Didymopanax during the previous century. That concept had come to be based largely on a single feature, carpel number (mostly two, in Didymopanax, vs. five or more in Schefflera), that was ultimately discredited. Based on that now-abandoned notion, two spp. in Costa Rica had been attributed to Didymopanax (e.g., in Standley's Flora of Costa Rica): D. morototoni (Aubl.) Decne. & Planch. and D. pittieri Marchal (the names we learned originally). Only the former sp. is treated here, as Schefflera morototoni (Aubl.) Maguire, Steyerm. & Frodin; D. pittieri (now known as Schefflera rodriguesiana Frodin) is excluded from the Didymopanax group and mentioned just fleetingly in the introductory pages, where it is assigned to the "Sciodaphyllum group" of Schefflera. The following combination of characters distinguishes the Didymopanax group among neotropical Schefflera: a sericeous or villous indumentum (at least on young leaves), (usually) short and apically bifid stipules, paniculate-umbellate inflorescences with both staminate and perfect flowers (i.e., the plants are andromonoecious), usually pedicellate flowers with free petals and the stamen filaments shorter than the anthers, and fruits with free, recurved styles. On that basis, 37 spp. are recognized as belonging to the group and treated in this revision; most are "restricted to small areas of lowland to mid-elevation tropical regions across Brazil and adjacent southern Venezuela," with (as indicated previously) only S. morototoni reaching Costa Rica. Features synonymy and typology, technical descriptions of the Didymopanax group and each of its spp., a dichotomous and indented key to spp., distribution and phenology summaries, discussions, specimen citations, distribution maps, and an index to exsiccatae. The introductory portion belabors taxonomic history, morphology, and geographic distribution. All the spp. are depicted in composite line drawings.
And to elaborate further: it is our understanding [see, e.g., The Cutting Edge 12(1): 9–10, Jan. 2005] that Schefflera, as currently circumscribed, is polyphyletic; that the generic type sp. belongs to a distinct clade restricted to New Zealand and the southwest Pacific region; and that the clade harboring the New World spp. will therefore require a different genus name (perhaps Sciodaphyllum P. Browne). Most of those facts are acknowledged in the opening paragraph of this revision, but scarcely addressed thereafter. In any case, it seems clear that all the spp. treated in this work, many of which were previously classed in Didymopanax, will ultimately be banished from Schefflera as well.
Gamba, D. & F. Almeda. 2018. New combinations in the neotropical genus Miconia (Melastomataceae: Miconieae). Phytotaxa 357: 298–300.
A loose end (or two) gets tied: the sp. (common in Costa Rica) that we had long known as Ossaea micrantha (Sw.) Macfad. ex Cogn. was recently transferred to Miconia by these authors [see under "Gamba," this column, in The Cutting Edge 22(1), Jan. 2015], who adopted the nomen novum M. neomicrantha Judd & Skean. However, as we suspected at the time, the latter name was trumped by the synonym Octopleura rubescens Triana, here combined as Miconia rubescens (Triana) Gamba & Almeda and implemented as the accepted name for the sp. What we did not suspect was a problem with the name Miconia spiciformis Gamba & Almeda, proposed as a replacement name for Ossaea spicata Gleason (mentioned in the Manual as expected in Costa Rica). It turns out that the name in Miconia ostensibly blocking the transfer thereto of O. spicata had not been validly published, occasioning the new combination Miconia spicata (Gleason) Gamba & Almeda (of which M. spiciformis becomes a synonym).
Gomes-da-Silva, J. & T. T. Souza-Chies. 2018. What actually is Vriesea? A total evidence approach in a polyphyletic genus of Tillandsioideae (Bromeliaceae, Poales). Cladistics 34: 181–199.
Already shorn of Werauhia at the time, Vriesea was presented in the Manual Bromeliaceae treatment (2003) as a genus of "ca. 200 spp." (281 according to this paper), though only six were attributed to Costa Rica. One of the latter, Vriesea monstrum (Mez) L. B. Sm., has since been segregated into the monospecific genus Jagrantia [see under "Barfuss," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(1), Jan. 2017]. The present study reveals that, even with that, Vriesea remains polyphyletic, a situation its authors propose to remedy by restricting the concept to only those spp. (214, we gather) "found in the Chacoan and Parana subregions" of South America. As none of the five remaining Costa Rican spp. was included in the study, we cannot speculate on their potential fate, although we presume they will be banished from Vriesea (the former Vriesea monstrum, however, was included, and we can confirm that its treatment as a separate genus is at least tenable). Tillandsia also appears polyphyletic in these cladograms, and our cursory inspection suggests that at least Josemania and Lemeltonia (among the genera segregated from Tillandsia in the "Barfuss" paper cited above) may hold water. A "Taxonomic treatment" near the end of the paper features a section entitled "Recircumscription of Vriesea," which consists mainly of a diagnostic description. The authors "refrain from making any new combinations here due to the low taxonomic sampling of representatives of non-Vriesea s.s., as well as Mezobromelia."
Hassemer, G. 2018. Taxonomic and geographic notes on the neotropical Commelina (Commelinaceae). Webbia 73: 23–53.
Lectotypes are perfunctorily designated (with all the chosen specimens shown in color) for various synonyms of Commelina diffusa Burm. f., C. erecta L., and C. tuberosa L., the accepted names for spp. occuring or (in the case of C. tuberosa) expected in Costa Rica. Yawn! A dichotomous (though non-indented) key to the spp. of Commelina occurring in what appears to be a random selection of South American countries may be of some use to our readers, as it includes at least four spp. known from Tiquicia.
——. 2018. Typification of five neotropical species of Commelina (Commelinaceae). Phytotaxa 350: 15–23.
Once again (see under "Costa-Silva," this column), this journal traffics in the typification of taxa. Commelina leiocarpa Benth. is the accepted name for a widespread sp., and the only one of the five addressed in this paper that applies unequivocally to a taxon occurring in Costa Rica. It is lectotypified, with no apparent consequences. An "Erratum," published the following week in the same journal (Phytotaxa 350: 300), corrects several minor errors (though not the glaring one of the title). All of the newly designated lectotype specimens are illustrated in color.
Jiménez, J. E., P. Juárez & J. M. Chaves-Fallas. 2018. Rediscovery of Phaedranassa carmiolii (Amaryllidaceae), an endangered species from Costa Rica. Brittonia 70: 214–220.
Phaedranassa carmiolii Baker, though described from a cultivated plant that had originated in Costa Rica, has never been established as occurring naturally in that country, and even its status as a distinct sp. has been questioned. This contribution appears to answer the first of those questions, if not necessarily the second, and furnishes much valuable new information for future studies. The authors have observed and (sometimes) vouchered several wild—and presumably indigenous—populations of P. carmiolii, mainly in the Dota and Tarrazú regions, documenting a "Manualese" distribution summary more or less as follows: "Bosque muy húmedo y pluvial, laderas, plantaciones y orillas de ríos y caminos, 1400–1800 m; vert. Pac. N Cord. de Talamanca. Fl. ene.–mar., dic." Local residents attest to the existence of these populations dating back at least 50–80 years, and use the rather generic common name Lirio for the plants. These would be the first bonafide Mesoamerican records for this otherwise South American genus. Cognizant of the largely ruderal habitats in which P. carmiolii occurs, the authors note that some congeners grow under similar conditions. Visitation by hummingbirds was observed, though asexual reproduction (via the production of innumerable bulbils) appears to predominate. A complete description is provided, along with specimen citations, a distribution map, and color photos from life. As to the distinctness of the sp., the authors concede that the lack of a recent taxonomic revision of Phaedranassa complicates efforts to determine whether P. carmiolii may be conspecific with one or another sp. described from South America. They enumerate four similar spp. (distinguishing P. carmiolii rather convincingly from one of them), but neglect to mention that P. carmiolii has significant priority over all the other names involved.
—— & F. R. Barrie. 2018. A new species of Wimmeria (Celastraceae) from Central America. Phytotaxa 348: 229–234.
Wimmeria excoriata J. E. Jiménez & Barrie, sp. nov., was discovered in Costa Rica by its first author more than five years ago [see under "Leaps and Bounds" in The Cutting Edge 22(2), Apr. 2013], as reported shortly thereafter in a reputable publication [see "Jiménez Vargas," under "Germane Literature," in The Cutting Edge 22(4), Oct. 2013]. On both occasions, the taxon involved was identified as Wimmeria pubescens Radlk., the name used for the same entity in the Flora de Nicaragua (2001). However, in subsequent years the second author (working up the Flora mesoamericana treatment of Celastraceae) came to realize that the name W. pubescens properly applied to a different sp., restricted to southern Mexico and Guatemala, and that the more southern sp. (Honduras to Costa Rica) passing under that name was undescribed; in fact, it is apparently more similar to Wimmeria cyclocarpa Radlk. (of Guatemala and El Salvador), with which it is compared here. The Costa Rican distribution and phenology of Wimmeria excoriata (named for its peeling bark) may be specified as follows: "Bosque seco, bordes de bosque, sabanas arboladas y orillas de caminos, 200–450 m; vert. Pac. Cord. de Guanacaste (vecindad de Salitral), N Pen. de Nicoya (P.N. Barra Honda). Fl. jun., oct." The new sp. is treated provisionally as "Wimmeria sp. A" in the Manual draft account by co-PI Barry Hammel though, curiously, the voucher used there is not cited in this paper. Features a distribution map, a composite line drawing, and color photos from life.
Jiménez-Mejías, P., M. Strong, S. Gebauer, A. Hilpold, S. Martín-Bravo & A. A. Reznicek. 2018. Taxonomic, nomenclatural and chorological reports on Carex (Cyperaceae) in the Neotropics. Willdenowia 48: 117–124.
Just one tidbit for us here, but it's a juicy one: Carex setigluma Reznicek & S. González, previously known only from southwestern Colombia and Ecuador, is reported disjunctly from Costa Rica—the first Central American record of the sp. The Costa Rican collection is A. Chacón 561 (MO), from 2400 m elevation in the Sabanas de Dúrika, a remote site on the upper Atlantic slope of the Cordillera de Talamanca. That specimen had been determined originally as Carex polystachya Sw. ex Wahlenb. by the late Jorge Gómez-Laurito (1993), and was presumably included in that concept for Jorge's (2003) Manual Cyperaceae treatment (the two spp. are not compared in the protologue of C. setigluma). The Costa Rican specimen is slightly anomalous in having "some achenes constricted on two sides" (vs. on just one side in the South American material), but is "otherwise...typical of C. setigluma."
Karremans, A. P. & J. E. Jiménez. 2018. Pleurothallis hawkingii and Pleurothallis vide-vallis (Orchidaceae; Epidendroideae), two new species from Cordillera de Guanacaste in Costa Rica. Phytotaxa 349: 185–191.
Pleurothallis hawkingii Karremans & J. E. Jiménez, compared with P. bothros Luer, hails from 900–1300 m on the Atlantic slope (and near the Continental Divide) of the Cordillera de Guanacaste (with three of the four collections from near the summit of Volcán Orosí), while P. vide-vallis Karremans & J. E. Jiménez, compared with P. hawkingii(!), is known only by the type, from 1900–1950 m elevation near the summit of Volcán Miravalles (of which the epithet is a Latin translation). A distribution map is provided, and both new spp. are illustrated with color photos of living material. And yes, the epithet of Pleurothallis hawkingii honors the renowned physicist Stephen W. Hawking, "who passed away the day this manuscript was submitted." These two entries boost our running count of new orchid spp. described from Costa Rica in the past quarter-century to 391.
Lima, L. V., R. S. Viveros & A. Salino. 2018. Typification of a Linnaean name in Gleicheniaceae (Polypodiopsida). Phytotaxa 351: 189–192.
The name alluded to in the title is Acrostichum furcatum L., the basionym of Sticherus furcatus (L.) Ching—which, for those (like us!) who may have forgotten, is now the accepted name for the sp. that was treated as S. palmatus (J. H. Schaffn. ex Underw.) Copel. in Flora mesoamericana Vol. 1 (1995) [see under "Gonzales," this column, in The Cutting Edge 19(1), Jan. 2012]. Acrostichum furcatum had already been lectotypified on a Plumier plate; however, because the taxonomy of Sticherus "is mainly based on scales [sic] morphology," and "the lectotype has no representation of any scale of the plant, it is not sufficient by itself to circumscribe the taxon." The authors remedy the situation by designating as epitype an actual herbarium specimen (collected by Plumier himself, and possibly qualifying as original material) that upholds the prevailing application of the name. Both type elements are depicted in color photos.
Liu, S.-H., C. E. Edwards, P. C. Hoch, P. H. Raven & J. C. Barber. 2018. Genome skimming provides new insight into the relationships in Ludwigia section Macrocarpon, a polyploid complex. Amer. J. Bot. 105: 875–887.
Of the four currently accepted spp. in the titular section, only Ludwigia octovalvis (Jacq.) P. H. Raven occurs in Costa Rica. Said sp. was characterized in the Manual Onagraceae treatment (2007) as "quizás...la más variable" in its genus. That impression is certainly bolstered by the results of the present study, which "indicate that diploid, tetraploid, and hexaploid lineages of L. octovalvis do not form a monophyletic group." Accoring to the cladograms, neither the (four) New World accesssions nor the (two) Old World accessions are (considered separately) monophyletic nor, for that matter, are the (three) Mexican accessions (though all diploid). Due to the "limited sampling and analysis" of this study, no taxonomic resolutions are ventured. We gather (from the authors' discussion) that the Costa Rican populations of L. octovalvis are most likely tetraploid, as the Brazilian accession, which was "sister to all other accessions of sect. Macrocarpon." However, we cannot hazard a guess as to the ploidy level of the type of Oenothera octovalvis Jacq., the provenance and even the existence of which appear uncertain.
Lucas, E. J., B. S. Amorim, D. F. Lima, A. R. Lima-Lourenço, E. M. Nic Lughadha, C. E. B. Proença, P. O. Rosa, A. S. Rosário, L. L. Santos, M. F. Santos, M. C. Souza, V. G. Staggemeier, T. N. C. Vasconcelos & M. Sobral. 2018. A new infra-generic classification of the species-rich Neotropical genus Myrcia s.l. Kew Bull. 73(9): 1–12.
So here we have it, at long last, a formalized infrageneric classification of Myrcia (Myrtaceae) that includes both Calyptranthes and Marlierea (genera that were accepted in the Manual, and most other floristic and taxonomic works up to the present time). The new system employs nine sections, all but three of which are debuted (as new taxa or new combinations) in this paper. The genus name Calyptranthes Sw. becomes the basis for Myrcia sect. Calyptranthes (Sw.) A. R. Lourenço & E. Lucas (comb. nov.), while Marlierea Cambess. is (according to its type) a synonym of Myrcia sect. Aulomyrcia (O. Berg) Griseb. The "taxonomic treatment" provides synonymy, typology, and technical descriptions for the genus and all of its sections, distribution summaries and "notes" for the latter, and a dichotomous (though non-indented) key to the sections. This process has been dragging on for quite a long while now [see, e.g., under "Lucas," this column, in The Cutting Edge 18(4), Oct. 2011], but we still have not been supplied with all the new sp.-rank combinations in Myrcia that would be necessary for full deployment of this new system. Dare we appeal to GLOVAP?
Matos, F. B. & J. T. Mickel. 2018. The Brazilian species of Elaphoglossum section Setosa (Dryopteridaceae). Brittonia 70: 173–205.
Of the 17 spp. treated here, five occur in Costa Rica, and a few Costa Rican specimens are cited; moreover, all the spp. are keyed, described, and illustrated, as one would expect from a proper revision. Thus, this contribution may prove to be of some utility to workers on the Costa Rican flora. Enough said.
——, A. Vasco & R. C. Moran. 2018. Elaphoglossum doanense and Elaphoglossum tonduzii: new members of Elaphoglossum sect. Squamipedia (Dryopteridaceae) and their significance for inferring the evolution of rhizome habit and nest-forming leaves within the genus. Int. J. Pl. Sci. 179: 296–313.
By now our readers will have gleaned that we generally do not concern ourselves with subjects like infrageneric classification and the evolution of characters. However, this paper also provides a taxonomic treatment of Elaphoglossum doanense L. D. Gómez and E. tonduzii Christ (both of which occur in Costa Rica), which should prove more useful to our work. We get a dichotomous key (including two other, morphologically similar, spp. in the same section), typology (there are no synonyms), technical descriptions, distribution summaries, comprehensive specimen citations, distribution maps, and discussions. The two spp. of the title are illustrated with color photos from life, and all four keyed spp. with SEM micrographs of spores and silhouettes of herbarium specimens.
Mazumdar, J., P. Korall, S. Weststrand & J. McNeill. 2018. (2594) Proposal to conserve Selaginella nom. cons. against the additional name Didiclis (Selaginellaceae). Taxon 67: 442.
"The transfer of about 700 species names to Didiclis would be highly disadvantageous." Amen!
McDade, L. A., T. F. Daniel & C. A. Kiel. 2018. The Tetramerium lineage (Acanthaceae, Justicieae) revisited: phylogenetic relationships reveal polyphyly of many New World genera accompanied by rampant evolution of floral morphology. Syst. Bot. 43: 97–116.
The so-called "Tetramerium lineage," confirmed as monophyletic in this molecular study (involving the two main Manual Acanthaceae contributors), is characterized by "flowers with anthers and stigma positioned adjacent to the lower [corolla] lip..." Six of its genera occur (or have been alleged to occur) in Costa Rica: Anisacanthus, Carlowrightia, Henrya, Pachystachys, Streblacanthus, and Tetramerium. Of these, only Henrya, Streblacanthus (in its traditional sense), and Tetramerium emerge here as monophyletic. However, Streblacanthus is nested within a paraphyletic Pachystachys, to which all but one of its spp. were recently transferred [see under "Cortês," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(1), Jan. 2017], remedying the problem; these authors approve those transfers as "phylogenetically warranted." Carlowrightia had already been revealed as polyphyletic [see The Cutting Edge 15(3): 4–5, Jul. 2008]; however, as confirmed by the present study, its sole Costa Rican representative, C. arizonica A. Gray, groups near the generic type sp. in the "Core Carlowrightia clade," and thus should not be threatened. Anisacanthus is another story: its lone Costa Rican member, which (though apparently an undescribed sp.) was actually included in this study, groups with A. nicaraguensis Durkee (and one other provisional congener) in a clade well removed from that evidently harboring the generic type (itself not sampled by these authors) and sister to a group of Carlowrightia spp. likewise separated from their "Core" clade. Presumably these adrift spp. must all be accommodated eventually in one or two new genera, but no taxonomic action is taken at the present time. And one final observation: recent work on the "justicioid" lineage of Acanthaceae from this same lab [see under "Kiel," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(4), Oct. 2017] had excluded Justicia ephemera Leonard—known in Costa Rica by just one historical collection—from that group (a development not noted in our review of the paper in question). As a result, J. ephemera was included in the present study, in which it emerged in a sisterly relationship with the oligospecific South American genus Fittonia (one sp. of which is well known in cultivation). Still, no taxonomic resolution is proffered here, and the authors waffle on whether or not J. ephemera should be included in Fittonia, noting that, while it differs markedly in habit and inflorescence structure, its flowers "are quite similar in size and shape." Includes one composite plate of color photos of selected flowers from life.
McDonnell, A., M. Parks & M. Fishbein. 2018. Multilocus phylogenetics of New World mikweed vines (Apocynaceae, Asclepiadoideae, Gonolobinae). Syst. Bot. 43: 77–96.
Apocynaceae subtribe Gonolobinae Liede, restricted to the New World, comprises some 500 spp., the generic classification of which has been chaotic for at least the past century. Numerous genus names have been applied to the spp. represented in Costa Rica over the years, though only Fischeria, Gonolobus, Macroscepis, Matelea, Polystemma, and Prosthecidiscus have been widely accepted, as in the Manual draft treatment by Doug Stevens (MO). Several more recently proposed segregates [see especially under "Morillo," this column, in The Cutting Edge 22(3), Jul. 2015] have yet to be adequately assessed (nor are they here). This study professes to be "one of the most comprehensive phylogenies of gonoloboid milkweeds to date and the first to sample multiple nuclear loci and include allelic data"; nonetheless, we are not overly impressed by either the extent of sampling ("relatively sparse," according to the authors themselves) or the results. Little headway appears to have been made. The subtribe itself is supported as monophyletic; also, Gonolobus "was recovered as monophyletic in all analyses," but the only sp. that has been questionable in that regard, G. denticulatus (Vahl) W. D. Stevens, was not included in the study. Matelea is said to be "paraphyletic to the rest of the subtribe" (to us it looks rampantly polyphyletic), but the type sp. was not sampled, frustrating any speculation; the authors cite other sources as claiming that, ultimately, "Matelea will contain relatively few tropical American taxa" (which seems to imply—falsely, we feel sure—that it will contain a lot of temperate and/or Old World taxa). Polystemma may (or may not) be polyphyletic; the authors seem to be saying that it is, but the various cladograms are equivocal. And so it goes. Disclaimers figure among the most persuasive statements made by these authors, e.g.: "A great deal of phylogenetic and taxonomic work remains to be conducted to thoughtfully circumscribe most genera other than Gonolobus..."; and: "...a stable taxonomy remains in flux and will continue to pose a challenge until robust, detailed phylogenetic hypotheses are further developed for most clades of this rapid radiation." The authors claim that "studies sampling more loci and taxa are currently underway" in their lab. More power to them!
Moonlight, P. W., W. H. Ardi, L. Arroyo Padilla, K.-F. Chung, D. Fuller, D. Girmansyah, R. Hollands, A. Jara-Muñoz, R. Kiew, W.-C. Leong, Y. Liu, A. Mahardika, L. D. K. Marasinghe, M. O'Connor, C.-I Peng, A. J. Pérez, T. Phutthai, M. Pullan, S. Rajbhandary, C. Reynel, R. R. Rubite, J. Sang, D. Scherberich, Y.-M. Shui, M. C. Tebbitt, D. C. Thomas, H. P. Wilson, N. H. Zaini & M. Hughes. 2018.
Dividing and conquering the fastest-growing genus: towards a natural sectional classification of the mega-diverse genus Begonia (Begoniaceae). Taxon 67: 267–323.
Let's make this (relatively) brief: analyses of three plastid markers for 574 spp. of the huge (1870 spp.), pantropical genus Begonia resulted in the recognition of 70 sections, five of which are here described as new. We find this paper to be long on phylogeny and short on morphology: there are lots of cladograms, but (most unfortunately) no key to the sections (though we get lots of color photos of living plants). Some of the sections (e.g., the newly described Begonia sect. Ephemera Moonlight) are founded solely on cladistic rationale, and are not distinguished on a morphological basis. A "Taxonomic treatment" presents all the sections in quasi-alphabetical order, offering for each synonymy and typology, a sp. list, a distribution summary, and taxonomic notes. A description is also provided, or (more often) a reference to a previously published description. The distribution summaries are reasonably accurate, facilitating the following breakdown for Costa Rica. The 44 Begonia spp. recorded from the country (according to the latest Manual draft treatment) are apportioned among 11 sections, but more than half reside in just two of these: Begonia sect. Gireoudia (Klotzsch) A. DC. (with 21 spp. in Costa Rica) and B. sect. Ruizopavonia A. DC. (with eight spp.). No other section is represented in the country by more than three spp., and five by but a single sp. Just one of the new sections (B. sect. Ephemera) is recorded from Costa Rica. With regard to the "fastest-growing" claim of the title: in the support of this, the authors note that 341 new spp. of Begonia were published between 2005 and 2015, and that "the number of undescribed species from Borneo alone is estimated at over 300." That last number was evidently not included in their estimated current sp. total of 1870, which (they suggest) "is likely to rise to well over 2000." How long will it be before some enterprising taxonomist seizes the opportunity to cut this intolerable mass down to size?
Morales, J. F. 2018. Una nueva especie y notas de las Proteaceae en Costa Rica. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 12: 81–88.
The main agenda of this paper is to address and redress certain alleged errors relevant to Costa Rica in the Flora Neotropica Monographs Proteaceae volume [see The Cutting Edge 15(2): 8–9, Apr. 2008] by Ghillean T. Prance and coauthors. In fact, most of said errors were already pointed out, if not resolved definitively, in the Manual Proteaceae treatment (2014) by the author of this paper. Here these matters are dispatched more authoritatively, with the citation of critical herbarium specimens. By that device, Panopsis antioquensis L. E. Gut., P. mucronata Cuatrec., P. sessilifolia (Rich.) Sandwith, P. suaveolens (Klotzsch) Pittier, and Roupala percoriacea A. H. Gentry are all expunged emphatically from the Costa Rican flora, Roupala loranthoides Meisn. is reaffirmed as a synonym of R. glaberrima Pittier, and Panopsis acostana J. F. Morales and Roupala sessiliflora J. F. Morales are reclaimed as distinct spp. (the latter by means of a key distinguishing it from the Panamanian R. percoriacea). All of those notions were already embodied in the Manual account. The "nueva especie" of the title was also included in the Manual, but under a provisional name, "Roupala sp. B." Now it has a real name, Roupala casota J. F. Morales, the epithet of which is an anagram of "Acosta," the region (cantón) of the type locality. The new sp., illustrated with a basic composite line drawing, is compared mainly with Roupala plinervia Cornejo & Bonifaz, supposedly "endémica de Ecuador," with which it shares distinctively plinerved leaves, and as which several Costa Rican specimens had been identified (and it must be said that, somewhat annoyingly, two Costa Rican specimens not cited here remain so identified in TROPICOS, as do two specimens from Belize). As for "Roupala sp. A" of the Manual: it is still known only by the specimen cited in the Manual, and thus remains unnamed.
Moran, R. C. & F. B. Matos. 2018. Elaphoglossum litanum (Dryopteridaceae), an older name for E. megalurum from the Andes and E. subciliatum from Central America. Brittonia 70: 201–213.
The Ecuadorean Elaphoglossum litanum (Sodiro) C. Chr. (with priority dating from 1905) is revealed as conspecific with the Central American sp. (Costa Rica and Panama) that has been known (e.g., in Flora mesoamericana Vol. 1) by the name E. subciliatum Rosenst. (1925), henceforth a synonym of the former. Also newly subsumed under E. litanum is Elaphoglossum megalurum Mickel (1991), based on a Peruvian type. The total geographic range (here mapped) of E. litanum is thereby extended from Costa Rica south to Bolivia. In addition to the synonymy, typology, map, and requisite discussions, we get a revised description, comprehensive specimen citations, and illustrations (including composite line drawings).
Nesom, G. L. 2018. Erigeron floribundus and E. sumatrensis (Asteraceae) in the USA and Mexico. Phytoneuron 2018-27: 1–19.
This is a synoptic treatment, for the region indicated in the title, of three (not two!) spp., here dubbed Erigeron bonariensis L., E. floribundus (Kunth) Sch. Bip., and E. sumatrensis Retz. The author's taxonomy differs from that of the recent Flora mesoamericana Asteraceae volume (see under "Davidse," this column), in which the aforementioned taxa were segregated in the genus Conyza. According to this author, Erigeron sensu stricto is paraphyletic with respect to Conyza, which is itself polyphyletic. The two taxonomies also diverge at lower ranks: the taxon here called Erigeron floribundus was accorded only varietal rank in Flora mesoamericana, under the name Conyza sumatrensis (Retz.) E. Walker var. leiotheca (S. F. Blake) Pruski & G. Sancho. Despite its differing taxonomy and geographic emphasis, this well-illustrated paper may prove useful for distinguishing these difficult entities in Costa Rica (where all three occur).
Ortiz, O. O., T. B. Croat & R. M. Baldini. 2018. Current status of aroid species diversity in Panama, including new records for the country. Webbia 73: 141–153.
Upon the publication in 2003 Manual Vol. 2, Araceae + Lemnaceae (the families were treated separately) was represented in the country by 255 spp. in 24 genera. While the first of those totals has edged upward slightly since that time, it pales in comparison to the 436 spp. (in 26 genera) now recorded from Panama (and these authors estimate that the figure will eventually top 600). As in Costa Rica, the two largest aroid genera in Panama are Anthurium and Philodendron, with 206 and 103 spp., respectively (vs. 87 and 62, in Costa Rica). Sobering indeed! Five new Panamanian country records are here reported, three of which involve spp. occurring in Costa Rica. The report of Dieffenbachia concinna Croat & Grayum from Panama would appear to cost us a Costa Rican endemic; however, the Manual was in error in claiming endemicity for D. concinna, which had already been collected from Nicaragua at the time (and the Nicaraguan collection was cited in the protologue!). Spathiphyllum silvicola R. A. Baker, also believed endemic to Costa Rica back in 2003, is reported here from Panama, but had previously turned up in Colombia [see The Cutting Edge 12(1): 6, Jan. 2005]. Finally, Anthurium upalaense Croat & R. A. Baker, ascribed in the Manual to Nicaragua and Costa Rica, can now be extended to western Panama (and is distinguished from the Panamanian A. purpureospathum Croat, which we had suspected to be conspecific).
——, —— & ——. 2018. A new Anthurium from La Amistad International Park (PILA), Panama-Costa Rica border. Phytotaxa 350: 167–171.
Anthurium jorgemendietanum O. Ortiz, Croat & Baldini (Araceae), honoring Panamanian botanist Jorge A. Mendieta, has not actually been found in Costa Rica; the single specimen was collected at 1000 m elevation on the Atlantic slope of the Cordillera de Talamanca in westernmost Panama (Prov. Bocas del Toro). We mention it here because of the strong likelihood that it will eventually turn up in Costa Rican territory; according to the narrative description (the coordinates are way off), the type locality is only about 10 km from the border, in the headwaters of a river (the Río Tskui) that drains into Costa Rica. The new sp. (illustrated with a color photo and a composite line drawing) is assigned to Anthurium sect. Cardiolonchium Schott which, so far as we know, has never been recorded from anywhere between southern Mexico and Panama [but see also under "Ortiz," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(4), Oct. 2017].
Ortiz, R. del C. 2018. A taxonomic revision of Curarea Barneby & Krukoff (Menispermaceae). PhytoKeys 100: 9–89.
This landmark revision has matured from the author's 1999 master's thesis, which was consulted for the Manual Menispermaceae treatment (2007) and duly cited therein. The changes for us are thus negligible, with Curarea cuatrecasasii Barneby & Krukoff remaining as the correct name for the only Costa Rican representative of its genus. However, the sp. total has jumped two notches (to nine) on the basis of two South American spp. here described as new (two new combinations are validated as well, which also do not concern us). Synonymy, typology, and technical descriptions are provided at all ranks, as well as a dichotomous (though non-indented) key to spp., distribution summaries, assessments of conservation status, discussions, and specimen citations (sometimes "Selected"). There are no indices in the body of the paper, but an index to exsiccatae is made available as "supplementary material." The generous and well-illutrated introductory part addresses morphology and anatomy, phytochemistry, ethnobotany, distribution (including a map), and phylogenetic affinities. All the spp. are illustrated, usually (as for Curarea cuatrecasasii) with separate composite line drawings depicting staminate and pistillate material.
Pérez Munguía, D. E. 2017. Cuatro nuevos registros de Orchidaceae para Honduras. Lankesteriana 17: 411–415.
Here we have a rare issue of Lankesteriana with virtually nothing pertaining to Costa Rica, with the quasi-exception of this: Chysis bruennowiana Rchb. f. & Warsz. is extended northward, to Honduras, vis-à-vis the geographic range given in Manual Vol. 1 (2003). Also attributed to Costa Rica, and similarly extended, is Sobralia powellii Schltr., a sp. not formally treated in the Manual; we are by now quite ignorant as to the correct application of the latter name, and wonder whether the author of this paper has any better knowledge of same. Distribution maps are provided, and all four newly recorded spp. are depicted in color photos from life.
Redonda-Martínez, R. 2018. Taxonomic revision of subtribe Leiboldiinae (Vernonieae: Asteraceae). Syst. Bot. 43: 344–363.
Asteraceae subtribe Leiboldiinae H. Rob. (one of 24 subtribes in tribe Vernonieae Cass.) comprises four genera and 14 spp. (according to this revision) "distributed in mountainous regions of Mexico and Central America." However, three of the genera (with five spp. total) are endemic to Mexico. That leaves Lepidonia, a genus of nine spp., eight of which are also endemic to northern Mesoamerica (Mexico and/or Guatemala). The lone outlier (and our only reason for featuring this paper) is Lepidonia lankesteri (S. F. Blake) H. Rob. & V. A. Funk (which, of course, we learned as Vernonia lankesteri S. F. Blake), endemic to Costa Rica, where it has been found only at ca. 1200-2500 m elevation, in cloud and oak forests, on the Atlantic slope (and near the Continental Divide) in the Cordillera Central (one historical collection from La Palma) and the northern Cordillera de Talamanca (with most collections from Parque Nacional Tapantí). We cannot account for the lower elevational limit of "610" m indicated by this author. The bottom line is that there is essentially nothing new here for us. The "Taxonomic treatment" includes synonymy, typology, technical descriptions, distribution summaries, and "Notes" for all taxa (including the subtribe), dichotomous, indented keys to the genera and the spp. of each, distribution maps, and comprehensive specimen citations. There are no indices, and no illustrations, other than a single composite plate of what appear to be SEM micrographs. The brief introductory portion focuses on taxonomic history. No new names or combinations are validated in this paper.
Rojas-Alvarado, A. F. 2018. Five new species of Diplazium Sw. (Athyriaceae) from Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Colombia. Amer. J. Pl. Sci. 9: 933–945.
Three of these novelties occur in Costa Rica: Diplazium chirripoense A. Rojas and D. cornutum A. Rojas are both endemic and restricted to relatively high elevations (2100–2850 m) on the Pacific slope of the Cordillera de Talamanca (mainly Cerro Chirripó), where they have been collected only by the author; the former is compared with D. skutchii Lellinger, the latter with D. diplazioides (Klotzsch & H. Karst.) Alston. Diplazium crassirhizoma A. Rojas, our third new sp., is more widespread, occurring at 1100–2250 m elevation on the Pacific slope of all the main Costa Rican cordilleras (except de Tilarán), and also in Nicaragua. It is distinguished from D. werckleanum Christ. All five new spp. are illustrated with basic composite line drawings.
Rouiss, H., F. Bakry, Y. Froelicher, L. Navarro, P. Aleza & P. Ollitraut. 2018. Origin of C. latifolia and C. aurantiifolia triploid limes: the preferential disomic inheritance of doubled-diploid 'Mexican' lime is consistent with an interploid hybridization hypothesis. Ann. Bot. (Oxford) 121: 571–585.
In the Manual Rutaceae treatment (2014), Citrus ×aurantiifolia (Christm.) Swingle was characterized as appearing to be "un híbrido entre C. medica...y otra sp. desconocida," and C. ×latifolia Tanaka ex Q. Jiménez as "aparentemente un híbrido entre C. ×aurantiifolia y al menos alguna otra entidad desconocida." Those statements were not wrong, but these authors take them one stage further: cutting (somewhat) through the gobbledygook of the title, Citrus ×aurantiifolia is now known to be "a direct interspecific" hybrid between C. medica L. and C. micrantha Wester, while C. ×latifolia (according to a prior study that we overlooked) comprises "interspecific hybrids involving a diploid gamete of C. aurantiifolia combined with a haploid ovule of C. limon and a haploid pollen of C. medica, respectively." Are we happy now?
Sakuragui, C. M., L. S. B. Calazans, L. L. de Oliveira, É. B. de Morais, A. M. Benko-Iseppon, S. Vasconcelos, C. E. G. Schrago & S. J. Mayo. 2018. Recognition of the genus Thaumatophyllum Schott - formerly Philodendron subg. Meconostigma (Araceae) - based on molecular and morphological evidence. PhytoKeys 98: 51–71.
This one is a real head-scratcher. The elevation of Philodendron subg. Meconostigma (Schott) Engl. to generic status (under the obscure name Thaumatophyllum Schott) appears wholly gratuitous; it didn't need to be done, and the authors present no compelling evidence for the change. Once again, nomenclatural stability is upended for no good reason. The molecular rationale is certainly not convincing. Even accepting the recent recognition of Adelonema [see under "Wong," this column, in The Cutting Edge 23(2), Apr. 2016]—itself ill-advised, in our opinion—most of the cladograms presented in this paper reveal no mandate for the separation of subg. Meconostigma (which the authors admit is "the sister group of P. subg. Pteromischum and P. subg. Philodendron"). The morphological distinctions among the three subgenera of Philodendron are nothing new; most have been appreciated for many years, and yet folks have been content with infrageneric ranking of Meconostigma for more than a century and a half. So why change now? Certainly, the cytological evidence presented in this paper provides no good reason. Yet, having said all of the above, our experience would lead us to expect that the botanical community at large will embrace this new taxonomy uncritically, in which case three of these authors will have stamped their names on all the "necessary" new combinations. Horticulturists should note that the familiar, widely cultivated ornamental long known (and probably still known to many) as Philodendron selloum K. Koch becomes, under this new system, Thaumatophyllum bipinnatifidum (Schott ex Endl.) Sakur., Calazans & Mayo. They will have good cause to be upset! A dichotomous (though non-indented) key to the spp. of "Thaumatophyllum" terminates the paper.
The direct impact of Thaumatophyllum on Costa Rican floristics is practically nil. The "genus" is exclusively South American, and only T. bipinnatifidum was mentioned in the Manual (in the discussion of the genus Philodendron) as occasionally cultivated in Tiquicia. Nevertheless, the acceptance of Thaumatophyllum is sure to have major repercussions that will extend to our shores. The status of Philodendron subg. Pteromischum (Schott) Mayo—more than three times the size of Meconostigma, and with 16 native spp. in Costa Rica—was already threatened (according to some cladograms) by the recognition of Adelonema, which should have been (and can still be) reclassified as a fourth subgenus of Philodendron. But its fate will be essentially sealed by the ascendancy of Thaumatophyllum: according to most of the cladistic evidence we have seen, the elevation of subg. Meconostigma to generic rank requires that the same action be taken for subg. Pteromischum (for which the genus name Elopium Schott would become operative). We have no doubt that these authors are gearing up for that very thing (though they do not tip their hands in this paper). Once again, we invoke the old adage, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it"; and according to the best cladistic evidence available to date, Philodendron, in its traditional broad sense, is not "broke" (i.e., non-monophyletic), as these authors have themselves conceded.
Salazar, G. A., J. A. N. Batista, L. I. Cabrera, C. van den Berg, W. M. Whitten, E. C. Smidt, C. R. Buzatto, R. B. Singer, G. Gerlach, R. Jiménez-Machorro, J. A. Radins, I. S. Insaurralde, L. R. S. Guimarães, F. de Barros, F. Tobar, J. L. Linares, E. Mújica, R. L. Dressler, M. A. Blanco, E. Hágsater & M. W. Chase. 2018. Phylogenetic systematics of subtribe Spiranthinae (Orchidaceae: Orchidoideae: Cranichideae) based on nuclear and plastid DNA sequences of a nearly complete generic sample. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 186: 273–303.
This "represents the most thorough phylogenetic analysis" to date of Orchidaceae subtribe Spiranthinae Lindl. ex Meisn., "the most species-rich lineage of terrestrial Neotropical orchids," with "> 500 species and 40 genera" (though it is worth recalling that, not so long ago, the entire group was accommodated in a single genus, Spiranthes). The results from analyses of DNA sequence data from 182 spp. in 36 genera "strongly support monophyly of Spiranthinae" (hence, Spiranthes of yore). Five major lineages were identified, and 18 of the 27 genera for which two or more spp. were sampled proved monophyletic. Considering only those genera represented in Costa Rica and accepted in the Manual Orchidaceae treatment (2003), the following pass muster: Beloglottis, Coccineorchis, Eltroplectris, Eurystyles, Funkiella, Hapalorchis, Lankesterella, Sarcoglottis, and Spiranthes. Coccineorchis is confirmed as "not closely related to Stenorrhynchos" (in which it had often been included), while Zhukowskia, which had been segregated [see The Cutting Edge 8(2): 14, Apr. 2001] from Sarcoglottis, is unmasked as "phylogenetically untenable and taxonomically superfluous" (it was not recognized in the Manual). Problems, to a greater or lesser degree, loom for several other genera. Brachystele is polyphyletic, and B. guayanensis (Lindl.) Schltr., its lone Costa Rican member, is found in a clade far removed from the generic type and embedded among spp. of Cyclopogon. Cyclopogon itself "is perhaps the taxonomically most challenging genus of Spiranthinae," as it embraces several segregates (most of recent vintage) base on minor floral details. Our inspection of the cladogram suggests that Cyclopogon could easily be made monophyletic by the inclusion of those segregates, together with Brachystele guayanensis and the South American genus Veyretia (itself of recent coinage). Furthermore, the sp. treated as Pelexia obliqua (J. J. Sm.) Garay in the Manual falls within Cyclopogon sensu lato, and nowhere near the other members of Pelexia. Mesadenella is non-monophyletic, but as neither the sole Costa Rican sp. nor the type sp. were included in the study, we cannot speculate on the fate of the former. Pelexia is paraphyletic, with respect (mainly) to Brachystele (apart from B. guayanensis), but the two Costa Rica spp. studied [P. congesta Ames & C. Schweinf. and P. funckiana (A. Rich. & Galeotti) Schltr.] are closely affined with the generic type. Schiedeella in the sense of the Manual is non-monophyletic, and the recent transfer of S. wercklei (Schltr.) Garay into the new segregate Greenwoodiella [see under "Salazar," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(1), Jan. 2017] is upheld. Stenorrhynchos in the sense of the Manual is non-monophyletic by virtue of the inclusion of S. lanceolatum (Aubl.) Rich. ex Spreng., classed more appropriately in the genus Sacoila, here portrayed as amply separated (Sacoila itself is diphyletic, but our sp. is the type). Finally, Deiregyne pyramidalis (Lindl.) Burns.-Bal., mentioned in the Manual family discussion of Orchidaceae as having been reported from Costa Rica as we went to press, is more correctly Aulosepalum pyramidale (Lindl.) M. A. Dix. & M. W. Dix (the name used by Franco Pupulin in the original report!), as it is sister to the type sp. of Aulosepalum in these analyses, in a clade well removed from the one harboring Deiregyne. Various recent authors (not necessarily named directly) are rebuked for their actions demonstrating "the meaninglessness of segregating genera based on minor floral attributes" (to quote from one such example). Perhaps to their credit, the present authors propose no taxonomic changes, presumably because certain critical portions of their cladogram "still lack clear resolution or support." That consideration may not prevent other workers from stepping in! Postscript: all the foregoing assessments of monophyly, paraphyly, and polyphyly with respect to other "genera" of tribe Spiranthinae ignore the possibility of returning to an "exceedingly broad" (to use the words of these authors) Spriranthes sensu lato, established in this paper as monophyletic. The genera accepted by contemporary orchidologists could just as well be demoted to subgenera or sections (though even as such, the problems highlighted by this study would remain).
Samper-Villarreal, J., B. I. van Tussenbroek & J. Cortés. 2018. Seagrasses of Costa Rica: from the mighty Caribbean to the dynamic meadows of the Eastern Tropical Pacific. Revista Biol. Trop. 66(Suppl. 1): S53–S65.
Seagrasses, where Costa Rica is concerned, comprise seven spp. in seven genera, apportioned among the following three families: Cymodoceaceae (Halodule, Syringodium), Hydrocharitaceae (Halophila, Thalassia), and Ruppiaceae (Ruppia). All were treated in Manual Vols. 2 and 3 (2003), with Ruppia included in Potamogetonaceae. Due to their habitat, these plants are seldom collected by vascular plant taxonomists, landlubbers that we are. Moreover, the literature on these groups is often published in journals (e.g., devoted to marine biology) that we may not think to consult, are often not referenced in standard botanical sources, and may not be available in our libraries. For all of these reasons, we evidently did not do the greatest job of documenting the Costa Rican distributions of these spp. That deficiency is remedied by these authors, who have done a much more thorough job (in fact, they went a bit overboard, in our estimation, by including unvouchered, second-hand sight records). The distribution of seagrasses in Costa Rica is presented in two tables (see especially Table 2, organized by precise localities); we will not expound here on the details. The sp. total (seven) for Costa Rican seagrasses is the same here as in the Manual, but the particulars have changed: one sp. has been lost, while another has been added. The lost sp. is Halophila engelmannii Asch. [see under "Samper-Villarreal," this column, in The Cutting Edge 21(4), Oct. 2014], the Manual voucher for which has been reassessed by these authors as a misidentified specimen of H. baillonis (although they now accept its provenance, as well as the spelling of the last-mentioned epithet!). The added sp. is Halodule beaudettei (Hartog) Hartog [mentioned in the Manual as "Halophila beaudettei"; see The Cutting Edge 11(1): 13, Jan. 2004], here reported from disparate sites on the Pacific coast, partly on the basis of a Costa Rican master's thesis and papers published in herpetological and veterinary(!) journals (with no vouchers cited). Perhaps the jury should be considered still out on this one, especially as H. beaudettei is sometimes synonymized under H. wrightii Asch. (its lone congener in Costa Rica). The authors speculate that Halophila baillonis may turn up on the Atlantic coast of Costa Rica, and that "it is most likely just a matter of time" before "the newly introduced" (they do not say from where) Halophila stipulacea (Forssk.) Asch. is found there as well. A locality map (keyed to Table 2) is provided, but there are no illustrations.
Schatz, G. E., P. J. M. Maas, H. Maas-van de Kamer, L. Y. T. Westra & J. J. Wieringa. 2018. Revision of the Neotropical genus Sapranthus (Annonaceae). Blumea 63: 54–66.
——, ——, ——, —— & ——. 2018.
Revision of the Neotropical genus Desmopsis (Annonaceae). Blumea 63: 67–86.
The genera that are the subjects of these tandem contributions were revised (at least preliminarily) in the first author's University of Wisconsin Ph.D. dissertation (1987) but, inevitably, much progress has been made since that time. These effectively published manifestations are no-frills, cookie-cutter affairs, formatted identically and presenting the most essential information in an efficient manner. The first author of these papers is also the first author of the Manual draft treatment of Annonaceae (slated to appear in our final volume), which thus already incorporates most of the critical details relevant to Costa Rica. Both Desmopsis (with 25 spp. total) and Sapranthus (eight spp.) range from Mexico to Colombia, with the former genus represented by a single sp. in the West Indies (Cuba). The monophyly of Desmopsis has been challenged by recent molecular investigations [see, e.g., under "Guo," this column, in The Cutting Edge 24(4), Oct. 2017], a circumstance that is briefly discussed here but deemed unresolved; thus, the genus is treated in its traditional sense. Eleven spp. of Desmopsis are attributed to Costa Rica, including four (of the nine total) described as new: Desmopsis biseriata G. E. Schatz & Maas, from low elevations (ca. 150–400+ m) on the Atlantic slope of the Cordillera de Talamanca (and into westernmost Panama); D. confusa G. E. Schatz, N. Zamora & Maas, from (100–)1000–1600+ m elevation on the Pacific slope of the eastern Cordillera de Talamanca, the southern Fila Costeña, and the Península de Osa (and into western Panama); D. dukei G. E. Schatz, mainly of eastern Panama and northwestern Colombia, with one collection from Costa Rica (at 200 m in the Talamanca region); and D. talamancana G. E. Schatz & Maas, endemic to Costa Rica at 1450–1500 m elevation on the Pacific slope of the eastern Cordillera de Talamanca. The aptly named Desmopsis confusa had been frequently misidentified as D. oerstedii Saff., the range of which is now restricted accordingly to central Costa Rica. Neither of the two newly described Sapranthus spp. occurs in Costa Rica, so the status quo prevails for us: only Sapranthus palanga R. E. Fr. (with reddish to purplish or black, foul-smelling flowers, restricted to the Pacific slope) and S. viridiflorus G. E. Schatz (with generally greenish, fruity-smelling flowers, primarily on the Atlantic slope) occur in the country. Both revisions feature synonymy, typology, technical descriptions, distribution summaries, and notes at all ranks, dichotomous (though non-indented) keys to spp., distribution maps, and indices to exsiccatae, scientific names, and common names. Except for types and new spp., specimen data are omitted, so it is generally not possible to obtain a full picture of distribution within Costa Rica (a deficiency to be rectified in the Manual treatment). Brief considerations of taxonomic history, morphology, and phylogenetic position are presented in the introductory parts. A previously proposed sectional classification (featuring two sections, one monospecific) is accepted for Sapranthus, but the sp. entries (for both genera) are ordered alphabetically. Selected spp. are illustrated with color photos of living material, herbarium specimens, and/or plates.
Szlachetko, D. L., P. Baranow & M. Dudek. 2018. Materials towards taxonomic revision of the genus Palmorchis (Orchidaceae). Syst. Bot. 43: 130–152.
Palmorchis is an interesting genus of terrestrial, plicate-leaved orchids, generally restricted to primary forests in very humid, lowland regions and seldom collected. The sp. total ("15 o más") attributed to the genus by Robert L. Dressler (JBL) in his 2003 Manual treatment has since been doubled, to 34 (including five spp. described as new in this paper). However, the geographic range of Palmorchis according to the Manual ("Méx.–Perú, Bras.") requires correction, mainly because we can find no evidence (in this paper or any other source) that the genus occurs north of Nicaragua; a more accurate summary (abstracted from this paper) would be as follows: "Nic.–Bol. y Ven., Guayanas, Bras." Having said all of that, the vital statistics for Costa Rica remain substantially unchanged, with the same seven Palmorchis spp. treated by Dressler being the only ones recorded from the country by these authors, and—with one minor exception—under the same names. The exception is "Palmorchis sp. B" of the Manual, which evidently equates with the otherwise Panamanian P. nitida Dressler [see also The Cutting Edge 15(3): 4, Jul. 2008]. This contribution (rather more than synoptic) includes a dichotomous and indented key to spp., typology, technical descriptions, distribution summaries, sporadic specimen citations (often only the type), and "Notes." Eleven tables compare selected spp. with respect to various morphological attributes. Each sp. is depicted in a small and rather basic composite line drawing (showing habit and floral parts). Perhaps rather tellingly: no heterotypic synonyms are cited in this work—in other words, every sp. name ever published in Palmorchis is accepted as distinct; that may change when the revision toward which this aims is finally realized. None of the five new spp. occurs in Costa Rica.
Tang, G.-D. & L.-B. Zhang. 2018. Tectaria moranii (Tectariaceae), a new fern species from Costa Rica. Phytotaxa 357: 230–234.
The region of Tectaria surrounding T. incisa Cav. (in its traditional sense) has been a morass for quite a while now, and this paper only serves (at least in our minds) to muddy the waters even more. It would seem that the new sp. name Tectaria moranii Li Bing Zhang & G. D. Tang (honoring NY pteridologist Robbin C. Moran), based on just two specimens from the Estación Biológica La Selva, applies to the taxon that we learned originally, at the same site, as T. incisa f. vivipara (Jenman) C. V. Morton. By the time Flora mesoamericana Vol. 1 (1995) was published, said taxon had become widely accepted at sp. rank under the name Tectaria vivipara Jermy & T. G. Walker. Some years later, the taxonomy of the group in question was reinterpreted by our friend Alexander Rojas (JVR), who restricted T. vivipara to the Caribbean while pressing Tectaria lizarzaburui (Sodiro) C. Chr. into service for continental material previously subsumed under the former name [see The Cutting Edge 12(1): 12, Jan. 2005]. At the same time, Rojas described Tectaria ×chaconiana A. Rojas—posited as a hybrid between T. acutiloba (Hieron.) Maxon and T. lizarzaburui—based on one of his own collections from La Selva. The statement by these authors that "Tectaria moranii...is said to hybridize with T. acutiloba...to form T. ×chaconiana" constitutes tacit evidence that the new sp. equates (at least in their minds) with T. lizarzaburui sensu Rojas. The authors also tacitly reject (or at least ignore) Rojas's allegations that the names T. lizarzaburui and T. vivipara had (according to their types) been previously misapplied. Tectaria moranii is compared with and distinguished from both of the last-named spp., though no specimens of either are cited, and we really have no idea what is being compared (Rojas maintained that material generally identified as T. lizarzaburui likely corresponds to an undescribed sp.); also, T. vivipara is stated to "occur in Central America" and, at least potentially, even at La Selva. The ostensible new sp. is illustrated with a composite plate concocted from color photos of an isotype. Oddly, it is the DUKE isotype that is depicted, begging the question: why is no other DUKE material cited? This is a common taxon (or are there two taxa involved?) at La Selva, and has likely been collected there dozens, if not hundreds, of times. Most of that material would be at DUKE. We would advise that no new taxa be described from La Selva without evaluating all the relevant collections at DUKE.
Taylor, C. M. 2018. Rubiacearum americanarum magna hama pars XXXVIII: a new circumscription of Palicourea sect. Bracteiflorae, an Andean radiation with several new species (Palicoureeae). Novon 26: 66–138.
The author continues to investigate and refine the infrageneric classification of Palicourea, according to its recently amplified circumscription, based mainly on scrutiny of morphological details on herbarium specimens. This results in a redefinition of Palicourea sect. Bracteiflorae Borhidi to exclude certain spp. assigned thereto by the author of that taxon; the excluded spp. will hence be referred to Palicourea sect. Egenses C. M. Taylor, described here as new (though we learn next to nothing about its content, apparently to be revealed in a paper that is "in prep."). The residuum (those spp. remaining in sect. Bracteiflorae) is effectively revised in the paper under review, which includes synonymy and typology, technical descriptions of the section and each of its spp. (longer for those described as new), a dichotomous and indented key to spp., distribution summaries, and notes. The sp. entries are ordered alphabetically, within each of four informal groups. The sp. total for sect. Bracteiflorae stands at 51, including 23 spp. described as new, as well as 12 provided with new combinations and one with a nomen novum. As suggested by the title, the section is mainly distributed in Andean South America, and all of the novelties are from that region. Just seven spp. (representing three of the four informal groups) are attributed to Costa Rica: Palicourea allenii (Standl.) Borhidi, P. angustiflora (K. Krause) Borhidi, P. brachiata (Sw.) Borhidi, P. correae (Dwyer & M. V. Hayden) Borhidi, P. goldmanii (Standl.) Borhidi, P. solitudinum (Standl.) Borhidi, and P. torresianum (Standl.) Borhidi. All were included in Psychotria (under the same epithets) in the Manual Rubiaceae treatment (2014). The appearance of Palicourea correae in the foregoing list is a bit of a surprise, as it is quite similar to (at least as regards its inflorescences) and has been confused with spp. such as Palicourea chiriquensis (Standl.) Borhidi and P. elata (Sw.) Borhidi, neither of which is a member of sect. Bracteiflorae. That particular issue is actually addressed in the introductory section, where it is stated that the similarities among the aforementioned spp. "appear to be homoplasious," and that P. correae is "vegetatively more similar overall" to spp. of sect. Bracteiflorae, "in particular P. solitudinum." Otherwise, the introductory section deals mainly with taxonomic history and morphology. There are no specimen citations (except for types and new spp.) or indices, and illustrations (in the form of composite line drawings) are provided mainly for the new spp. (and a handful of others).
Testo, W. 2018. Novelties in Costa Rican Pityrogramma (Pteridaceae): a new species and a new hybrid from the Osa Peninsula. Amer. Fern J. 108: 27–33.
Here is the scenario: a botanist with little, if any, prior collecting experience in Costa Rica ventures into a well-botanized region of the Península de Osa and prepares two specimens of the weedy and variable fern genus Pityrogramma; one turns out to be a new sp., the other a hybrid involving that sp. and the "vil y vulgar" (to borrow a phrase from long-time Osa denizen Reinaldo Aguilar) P. calomelanos (L.) Link. Neither of these ostensible novelties had ever been found before. Sound unlikely? You bet it does! To be fair, however, we have often marveled at the ability of specialists to detect interesting spp. overlooked by generalist collectors. So, putting aside our skepticism: Pityrogramma hirsuta Testo, the new sp., is carefully distinguished from various congeners, of which P. ferruginea (Kunze) Maxon (among those occurring in Costa Rica) would appear to be most similar. Although the author made just one collection of P. hirsuta, the sp. "was abundant along a trail near disturbed secondary forest..." The new hybrid, Pityrogramma ×watkinsii Testo [its epithet honoring pteridologist James "Eddie" Watkins (GRCH)], is morphologically intermediate between its putative parents, and produces abortive spores (a detail mentioned in the discussion under P. hirsuta, but not in the description or discussion of the presumed hybrid). Just one plant of the hybrid was observed. Features a dichotomous and indented key to Central American Pityrogramma spp. (that excludes hybrids) and color photos of both novelties (depicting the holotype of each, plus living material of P. hirsuta).
Turner, I. M. 2018. A revised conspectus of Uncaria (Rubiaceae). Webbia 73: 9–21.
The title of this contribution seems to promise more than what is delivered: a mere nomenclator, with two names removed from synonymy (as according to the revision cited in Manual Vol. 7), several names retained as synonyms but "relocated," and "various names" lecto- or neotypified. Thirty-six spp. of Uncaria are accepted (vs. "ca. 35," as according to the Manual), just two of which occur in the New World. The accepted sp. and infraspecific names are listed alphabetically, with synonyms nested thereunder and bibliographic details and typology provided for all. A section on "Nomina nuda et nomina invalida" wraps up the proceedings. There are no substantive changes for Uncaria tomentosa (Willd.) DC., the lone Costa Rican representative of the genus, although a lectotype ("or possibly holotype") is designated for one of its synonyms. This paper was spun off from the author's work on the Flora of Singapore, so it stands to reason that nothing more comprehensive is likely to follow.