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Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica

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The Cutting Edge

Volume XVII, Number 4, October 2010

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

Baldini, R. M. 2010. Panicum maculatum Aubl.: its type and the correct use of Lasiacis maculata (Aubl.) Urb. (Poaceae, Paniceae). Adansonia sér. 3, 32: 109–119.

In recent years, the name Panicum maculatum Aubl. has generally been considered of dubious status, applying to some undetermined sp. of Lasiacis. It does not appear in either the Flora mesoamericana or Manual Poaceae treatments. Here the name is typified on the basis of a Plumier plate, the only element cited by Aublet in the protologue, which is accepted as the holotype. Associated Plumier manuscripts in Paris establish that the plant from which the plate was prepared grew in Martinique. Inferences from both morphological and geographical clues lead the author to conclude that the name P. maculatum applies correctly to the sp. now generally known as Lasiacis sorghoidea (Desv. ex Ham.) Hitchc. An epitype, comprising a herbarium specimen from Martinique, is designated accordingly. The name Lasiacis maculata (Aubl.) Urb. has priority over L. sorghoidea and, by all rights, ought to replace it under the present circumstances. But although the author suggests this, he does not adopt a position of strong advocacy, and we would not be surprised if his next paper were to be a proposal for conservation of L. sorghoidea.

Baumbach, N. 2010. Ein Ausflug zur Gattung Acianthera nach Monteverde – Costa Rica. Orchidee (Hamburg) 61: 263–273.

The author stalks Acianthera (Orchidaceae; a Pleurothallis segregate) in the Monteverde region. Evidently, this qualifies as high adventure to the readership of this journal. Lots of color photos.

Brummitt, R. K. 2010. Report of the Nomenclature Committee for Vascular Plants: 61. Taxon 59: 1271–1277.

A proposal to conserve Centrosema pubescens Benth. (Fabaceae) with a conserved type “is withdrawn by the proposers in favour of a forthcoming alternative proposal” (by which time the name will have been used in the Manual in a different sense than that favored by the proposers). Also, proposals to “superconserve” Amaryllidaceae against Alliaceae, and Aizoaceae against Mesembryanthemaceae (in the event the two families of each pair are combined), are recommended, while a similar proposal that would elevate Veronicaceae to supremacy over Plantaginaceae is not recommended. Finally, conservation of the name Tillandsia butzii Mez (Bromeliaceae) over T. inanis Lindl. is recommended—an unfortunate decision, we’d say, even though the former name was used in the Manual. Let the chips fall where they may.

Buerki, S., P. P. Lowry II, N. Alvarez, S. G. Razafimandimbison, P. Küpfer & M. W. Callmander. 2010. Phylogeny and circumscription of Sapindaceae revisited: molecular sequence data, morphology and biogeography support recognition of a new family, Xanthoceraceae. Pl. Ecol. Evol. 143: 148–159.

“Support” is the key word in the title. The results of this study in no way mandate the recognition of the new family. Consider this the traditionalists’ response to the recent lumping of Aceraceae and Hippocastanaceae into Sapindaceae, which has been embraced by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group [see this column in The Cutting Edge 17(1), Jan. 2010]. It turns out that, at least according to this study, those three families can be preserved in more or less their traditional circumscriptions by simply removing the monospecific, Chinese Xanthoceras from Sapindaceae to its own family. An attractive alternative to many, no doubt, but we’ve always felt that Acer, Aesculus, and Billia belonged properly in Sapindaceae, and are also persuaded by the notion that relationships are more important than differences. More to the point: the option of treating Hippocastanaceae as a separate family in the Manual is now lost to us, as it has been omitted from the text of our impending Vol. 5 (to be included with Sapindaceae in Vol. 7).

Plant Ecology and Evolution is an amalgam of two accordingly defunct journals, the Belgian Journal of Botany and Systematics and Geography of Plants (themselves relatively recent rechristenings of other titles).

Carnevali Fernández-Concha, G., W. R. Cetzal Ix, R. Balam Narváez & G. A. Romero-González. 2010. A synopsis of Cohniella (Orchidaceae, Oncidiinae). Brittonia 62: 153–177.

The genus name Cohniella applies to the so-called “rat-tail oncidiums,” two spp. of which have generally been attributed to Costa Rica and were treated in the Manual as Oncidium ascendens Lindl. and O. cebolleta (Jacq.) Sw. Molecular phylogenetic evidence has broken up Oncidium in the traditional sense of the Manual, but orchid specialists still cannot agree on an overall classification. Some authors have referred the “rat-tail oncidiums”(Cohniella) to Trichocentrum [see The Cutting Edge 8(4): 7, Oct. 2001], together with the so-called “mule ear oncidiums” (to which the genus names Lophiarella and Lophiaris apply); others prefer to maintain Trichocentrum in its traditional sense while recognizing the three segregates, as opted for in the present paper. (We covered all bases in the Manual by listing most of the possible alternative binomials in synonymy.) This contribution adds one sp. to the Costa Rican flora, and two others that would each have deserved at least honorable mention in the Manual. The outright addition is Cohniella brachyphylla (Lindl.) Cetzal & Carnevali, comb. nov. (based on Oncidium brachyphyllum Lindl., the name that would have been used in the Manual). Ranging northward to Mexico (whence the type), this sp. is distinguished from O. cebolleta by its wider leaves and details of labellar coloration and morphology. The Costa Rican records, from disparate localities on the Pacific slope, all involve historical collections (mainly by Anastasio Alfaro, and housed at AMES). Potentially occurring in Costa Rica (our honorable mentions) are Cohniella nuda (Bateman ex Lindl.) Christenson (based on Oncidum nudum Bateman ex Lindl.), recorded from the Península de Burica in westernmost Panama; and Cohniella teres (Ames & C. Schweinf.) Christenson (treated as a synonym of Oncidium ascendens in the Manual), which has been collected in both Nicaragua and Panama. These entities are also distinguished mainly on the basis of labellar details. The synopsis features synonymy and typology at all levels, a detailed genus description, three regional, dichotomous, and indented keys to spp., and, for each spp., paragraphs on diagnostic features, distribution, variation range, and taxonomy, as well as specimen citations (sometimes representative). Two new spp. are described, and three other new combinations validated, none pertinent to us. Illustrated with color photos of flowers in life. For the record: the genus name Lophiarella would apply to Oncidium pumilum Lindl. (mentioned in the Oncidium genus discussion in the Manual), while Lophiaris would apply to O. carthagenense (Jacq.) Sw. and O. luridum Lindl. (the latter mentioned in the genus discussion).

Chemisquy, M. A., L. M. Giussani, M. A. Scataglini, E. A. Kellogg & O. Morrone. 2010. Phylogenetic studies favour the unification of Pennisetum, Cenchrus and Odontelytrum (Poaceae): a combined nuclear, plastid and morphological analysis, and nomenclatural combinations in Cenchrus. Ann. Bot. (Oxford) 106: 107–130.

It has long been suggested that Cenchrus and Pennisetum should be combined, and here the deed is finally done, on the basis of molecular and cladistic analyses showing the latter genus to be “paraphyletic, with Odontelytrum and Cenchrus embedded within it.” We had always assumed that, if Cenchrus and Pennisetum were to be merged, it would be under the latter name (Pennisetum being the larger genus). But such is not the case: Cenchrus has priority, and all of the necessary combinations in that genus are here validated in the name of “Morrone” (who, we would hope, has gotten approval from the Australians). Even Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst. ex Chiov. is not immune, its recent segretation into the monospecific Kikuyuochloa [see The Cutting Edge 14(2): 11, Apr. 2007] being here mercifully debunked. The only Pennisetum sp. occurring in Costa Rica for which no new combination in Cenchrus was required is P. setosum (Sw.) Rich., the basionym of which is Cenchrus setosus Sw. Odontelytrum is (or was) a monospecific genus of Yemen and East Africa.

Christenhusz, M. J. M. 2010. Revision of the Neotropical fern genus Eupodium (Marattiaceae). Kew Bull. 65: 115–121.

This constitutes the third taxonomic revision dealing with this group of plants to be published in the past seven years. The first [see The Cutting Edge 11(1): 7, Jan. 2004] maintained the name Marattia laevis Sm., as used in Flora mesoamericana Vol. 1 (1995), for the sole member represented in Costa Rica. A subsequent revision of the entire family segregated the New World members of Marattia into two genera, resulting in the name Eupodium laeve (Sm.) Murdock for our guy. At the same time, the name Marattia kaulfussii J. Sm., synonymized under M. laevis in Flora mesoamericana, was resurrected, in the guise of Eupodium kaulfussii (J. Sm.) Hook., for a segregate sp. restricted to southeastern Brazil and northern Argentina. The present contribution goes one step further in confining E. laeve (still using the incorrect “laevis”) to the Greater Antilles and restoring Marattia pittieri Maxon (another synonym of M. laevis fide Flora mesoamericana) for an entity ranging from southern Mexico to Bolivia and Venezuela (as well as Trinidad). The new combination Eupodium pittieri (Maxon) Christenh. is accordingly validated, and applies to Costa Rican material. Features a dichotomous key to spp. and distribution map and, for each sp., synonymy and typology, a technical description, distribution summary, specimen citations, an evaluation of conservation status, and common names. There is no formal genus description, nor even a heading for the genus, and no indices. The brief introductory part touches almost exclusively on taxonomic history. Eupodium kaulfussii is depicted in photographs of living material, and E. laeve in a composite line drawing. N.B.: the other four spp. treated in Flora mesomericana under Marattia remain in that genus, and are not considered here.

——. 2010. Danaea (Marattiaceae) revisited: biodiversity, a new classification and ten new species of a neotropical fern genus. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 163: 360–385.

Just one of the new spp. is of interest to us: Danaea leussinkiana Christenh. (honoring the author’s mother), predicated on two collections made by Mirkka Jones [see The Cutting Edge 14(3): 1, Jul. 2007] at the Estación Biológica La Selva. This sp. is “remarkable in having an irridescent blue colour when adult,” although the author notes that “several other species such as D. nodosa and D. grandifolia also have iridescent colouring but mostly when juvenile.” Our question would be: does all the La Selva material that has been called D. nodosa (L.) Sm. equate with D. leussinkiana, or only a small subset thereof? That the author cites just two specimens would suggest the latter. Put us down as skeptical! A rather basic line-drawing of the new sp. by the author does little to enhance the concept. A dichotomous key to all Danaea spp. accepted by the author is presented at the end of the article, but, being non-indented, does not facilitate comparison of these various entities.

Cornejo, X. & H. H. Iltis. 2010. Studies in Capparaceae XXVII: six new taxa and a new combination in Quadrella. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 4: 75–91.

Just one of these novelties is of immediate interest to Costa Rican floristics: Quadrella morenoi Cornejo & Iltis (honoring Nicaraguan collector nonpareil Pedro Pablo Moreno), a sp. ranging from southern Mexico to the Guanacaste region. The name may be new to Costa Rica, but not the taxon: it was previously known to us as Capparis incana Kunth, a name here restricted [as Quadrella incana (Kunth) Iltis & Cornejo] to a “surprisingly but only superficially similar” sp. ranging from southern Texas to Honduras. The two spp. are further qualified as “remarkably distinct,” and assigned to different subgenera. Includes a distribution map and a photo (apparently somewhat touched up) of a herbarium specimen. Quadrella morenoi f. hastata Iltis is also described, based on anomalous juvenile foliage occurring over the entire range of the sp. (with one Costa Rican collection cited among the paratypes). This strikes us as an odd stratagem, akin to granting separate taxonomic recognition to fruiting and flowering branches of the same tree.

Coughenour, J. M., M. P. Simmons, J. A. Lombardi & J. J. Cappa. 2010. Phylogeny of Celastraceae subfamily Salacioideae and tribe Lophopetaleae inferred from morphological characters and nuclear and plastid genes. Syst. Bot. 35: 358–367.

Based on the spp. sampled in this study, only Peritassa, among the genera of subfamily Salacioideae (formerly referred to Hippocrateaceae) occurring in Costa Rica, is “supported as monophyletic.” Doubt is cast upon two other genera, Cheiloclinium and Tontelea, although the cladogram “does not contradict monophyly” of these. The prognosis is worse for Salacia, “resolved as a paraphyletic group” in which the “South American speces are more closely related to each other than they are to the Old World species.” The authors “favor subdivision of Salacia into two or more segregate genera,” but “await additional sampling, particularly of S. chinensis and African species, before proposing any new names.” The Asian Salacia chinensis L. is the type sp., meaning that any fragmentation of the genus along the lines suggested previously “would presumably require a new generic name for the Central and South American species.” We are steeling ourselves. Tribe Lophopetaleae is of no concern to New World floristics.

Dorr, L. J. & J. H. Wiersema. 2010. (1947–1958) Proposals to reject twelve names emanating from Loefling’s Iter Hispanicum (1758), Ayenia sidiformis (Malvaceae), Cofer (Symplocaceae), Cruzeta and C. hispanica (Amaranthaceae), Edechia inermis and E. spinosa (Rubiaceae), Justica putata (Acanthaceae), Menais and M. topiaria (?Boraginaceae), Muco (Capparaceae), Samyda parviflora (Salicaceae), and Spermacoce suffruticosa (Rubiaceae). Taxon 59: 1280–1282.

At least three of the names in the title could impact taxa occurring in Costa Rica: the genus name Cofer Loefl., which has priority over Symplocos Jacq.; Samyda parviflora Loefl., which could threaten Casearia sylvestris Sw.; and Spermacoce suffruticosa Loefl., possibly an earlier name for Diodella sarmentosa (Sw.) Bacigalupo & E. L. Cabral (or Diodia sarmentosa Sw., as the case may be).

Downie, S. R., K. Spalik, D. S. Katz-Downie & J.-P. Reduron. 2010.Major clades within Apiaceae subfamily Apioideae as inferred by phylogenetic analysis of nrDNA ITS sequences. Pl. Diversity Evol. 128: 111–136.

We note this in passing only because Arracacia, represented in Costa Rica by three spp., is among several genera that are suggested to be polyphyletic. No taxonomic resolution is ventured by the authors, and we are unable to speculate on the potential fate of the Costa Rican spp.

Plant Diversity and Evolution (how many more such permutations can we absorb?) is a new moniker for the venerable German journal Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie (i.e., “Bot. Jahrb. Syst.”).

Duchen, P. & S. S. Renner. 2010. The evolution of Cayaponia (Cucurbitaceae): repeated shifts from bat to bee pollination and long-distance dispersal to Africa 2–5 million years ago. Amer. J. Bot. 97: 1129–1141.

The molecular analyses on which this study was predicated reveal that the three sampled spp. of Selysia (out of four total) “form a clade that is deeply embedded in Cayaponia.” Without further ado, the authors sink Selysia and validate all the necessary new combinations in Cayaponia; Cayaponia prunifera (Poepp. & Endl.) Duchen & S. S. Renner will serve for the only one of these occurring in Costa Rica. Cionosicys, which had also been regarded as perilously close to Cayaponia, emerges as reasonably well removed (with two of its three or four sp. sampled). Unfortunately, we will not be able to fully incorporate the results of this study in our “in press” Manual Cucurbitaceae treatment (which maintains Selysia as distinct).

Estrada Ch., A. & D. Santamaría A. 2010. Una nueva especie de Fevillea (Cucurbitaceae: Zanonieae) de Costa Rica. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 4: 45–49.

Fevillea narae A. Estrada & D. Santam. becomes the second sp. of its genus in the Mesoamerican region, differing from the well-known F. cordifolia L. in its smaller habit, entire, non-glandular leaf-blades, subumbellate (vs. paniculate) male inflorescences, and narrowly triangular (vs. broadly ovate) sepals. The new sp. is endemic to Costa Rica, where it occurs at 200–1000 m elevation on the Pacific slope of the northern Cordillera de Talamanca (including Cerro Nara, whence the epithet). Just nine collections are known, mostly by the authors and their colleagues, dating back only as far as 1997. Illustrated with an excellent composite line drawing by INBio’s Claudia Aragón, as well as photos of living material. By the way, this was the last significant change that made it under the wire for Manual Vol. 5; we had already incorporated this sp. with a provisional name, so minimal alterations were needed in the final page-proofs.

Hall, J. C. 2008. Systematics of Capparaceae and Cleomaceae: an evaluation of the generic delimitations of Capparis and Cleome using plastid DNA sequence data. Botany 86: 682–696.

Here is one we must have overlooked from a few weeks back; thanks to Manual correspondent Xavier Cornejo (NY) for bringing it to our attention. This study confirms that Capparis, in its traditional circumscription, is diphyletic along New World/Old World lines. The generic type being the Old World C. spinosa L., the genus name is on shaky ground in the Western Hemisphere. Moreover, the New World contingent is paraphyletic, with respect to several smaller embedded genera (including Morisonia and Steriphoma) that could be threatened in a lumping scenario (though the splitting option is already well underway; see under “Cornejo” and “Iltis,” this column). Cleome is more seriously paraphyletic, with spp. of the genus “entrenched within all major lineages of Cleomaceae along with a number of other genera” (including Podandrogyne, in Costa Rica). Recent authors have suggested either splitting Cleome [see The Cutting Edge 15(1): 7, Jan 2008] or lumping it with other genera [see The Cutting Edge 12(4): 11, Oct. 2005]. This author does not take a definitive stand on the issue (pending “more sampling”), but notes that “the approach of subsuming smaller genera into Cleome would place all species of the family, possibly excluding western North American cleomoids, into a single, morphologically diverse genus.” Under the most conservative approach, the name Cleome would be restricted to just two Old World spp.

Iltis, H. H. & X. Cornejo. 2010. Studies in Capparaceae XXVIII: the Quadrella cynophallophora complex. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 4: 93–115.

The informal group alluded to in the title comprises five spp., just one of which occurs in Costa Rica. The Costa Rican entity has been known up to now by the name Capparis cynophallophora L., but that sp. [as Quadrella cynophallophora (L.) Hutch.] is restricted by these authors to the Antilles and Bahamas. Our guy thus becomes Quadrella isthmensis (Eichler) Hutch., which also occurs in southern Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, and Panama. Costa Rican material may be further qualified as belonging to the autonymic subsp. of Q. isthmensis, by virtue of the description of two new extralimital subspp. Features a dichotomous, indented key to spp. and subspp., full typology and synonymy, descriptions of variable length, distribution summaries, specimen citations (mostly representative), and distribution maps. Most of the taxa are illustrated, mainly with photographs of herbarium material. One new sp. and one new forma are described (in addition to the new subspp. mentioned previously) and two new combinations are validated, none relevant to Costa Rica; three names are lectotypified (including Quadrella isthmensis) and two others neotypified.

—— & ——. 2010. Studies in the Capparaceae XXIX: synopsis of Quadrella, a Mesoamerican and West Indian genus. J. Bot. Res. Inst. Texas 4: 117–132.

Quadrella, a segregate of Capparis (henceforth confined to the Old World), comprises 25 spp. ranging from the southern United States (Florida and Texas) to Colombia and Venezuela, and throughout the Antilles and Bahamas. An infrageneric classification featuring three subgenera is here unveiled. This synoptical treatment offers full synonymy and typology at all levels, a technical description of the genus, a dichotomous, indented key to subgenera (which are also compared in tabular form), and similar nested keys to the spp. and infraspecific taxa of each subgenus, as well as brief discussions and a section on excluded names. Geographic distributions are generally indicated in the keys and/or discussions. There are no formal descriptions (except of the genus) or specimen citations (excepting types). Thirteen new combinations are validated at sp. rank and two at subspp. rank, but only Quadrella filipes (Donn. Sm.) Iltis & Cornejo and Q. indica (L.) Iltis & Cornejo pertain to spp. represented in Costa Rica. Other names were either already available or dispatched in companion papers by these authors (see the preceding entry and under “Cornejo,” this column). Six names (including Capparis filipes Donn. Sm.) are lectotypified and two others (including the genus name) neotypified. There are no illustrations.

Jenny, R. 2007. An old species finally named and described: Gongora boracayanensis. Selbyana 28: 99–102.

Gongora boracayanensis Jenny, Dalström & W. E. Higgins (Orchidaceae) is here validly published, with a Latin description. We had overlooked this paper, and instead reviewed a slightly later one, in which the name was published invalidly (with no Latin—intentionally, we now realize), and with the author names in a different order. See that review [The Cutting Edge 16(1): 6–7, Jan. 2009] for additional information on this Costa Rica endemic.

Kohlmann, B., D. Roderus, O. Elle, Á. Solís, X. Soto & R. Russo. 2010. Biodiversity conservation in Costa Rica: a correspondence analysis between identified biodiversity hotspots (Araceae, Arecaceae, Bromeliaceae, and Scarabaeinae) and conservation priority life zones/Conservación de la biodiversidad en Costa Rica: análisis de la correspondencia entre áreas identificadas clave por su biodiversidad (Araceae, Arecaceae, Bromeliaceae y Scarabaeinae) y zonas de vida prioritarias para la conservación. Revista Mex. Biodivers. 81: 511–559.

This study relies on TROPICOS and INBio’s ATTA database, together with the Manual, to define (with the aid of GIS) areas of high priority for conservation in Costa Rica and to analyze the effectiveness of existing conservation areas for dung beetles and the three plant families mentioned in the title. The “most important conservation priority areas,” according to this approach, are the northeastern lowlands (e.g., Llanuras de San Carlos and de Tortuguero), the Península de Osa, and the Cordilleras de Guanacaste, de Tilarán, and Central. We would not dispute the importance of those areas, but feel that it is very dangerous to generalize on the basis of a few families, especially as two of the plant families selected for the study (Araceae and Arecaceae) are notably most diverse in lowland tropical wet forest (as the authors are at least partly aware). Different results would certainly have been obtained if the authors had looked at, say, pteridophytes, Lauraceae, and Orchidaceae. The relative importance of a particular life zone obviously varies according to the taxon involved. That said, existing conservation areas in Costa Rica appear to be doing a reasonably good job of protection for the three plant families studied: 83%–89% of the total spp. are already protected, and 80%–86% of the endemic spp. (though the term “endemic” is rather loosely and inconsistently defined throughout). The Cordillera de Talamanca, with a particularly high rate of “endemism,” is also the best-protected area, while the Cordilleras de Guanacaste, de Tilarán, and Central would appear to be the most threatened “and should be paramount for the official conservation planners.” Numerous maps are presented, and four appendices enumerate all the spp. in the study groups and provide details relevant to their distribution.

Labiak, P. H., M. Sundue & G. Rouhan. 2010. Molecular phylogeny, character evolution, and biogeography of the grammitid fern genus Lellingeria (Polypodiaceae). Amer. J. Bot. 97: 1354–1364.

This study shows Lellingeria to be monophyletic (and sister to Melpomene), provided that one small group is removed. The group in question has, in fact, already been removed (in a paper that continues to elude us) to the newly described genus Leucotrichum Labiak. The two affected Costa Rican spp., for which combinations in Leucotrichum have been validated by the author of the genus, are Lellingeria mitchelliae (Baker) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran and L. pseudomitchellae (Lellinger) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran.

Landrum, L. R. 2010. A revision of Calycolpus (Myrtaceae). Syst. Bot. 35: 368–389.

Fifteen spp. are now attributed to this neotropical genus, vs. 12, as indicated in the author’s (with Fred R. Barrie) 2007 Manual treatment. There are no substantive changes for the Costa Rican flora, with Calycolpus warszewiczianus O. Berg still the sole sp. represented in the country. Two other minor adjustments (in addition to total sp. number) are in order for the Manual account of Calycolpus: “Trin.” should be added to the geographic distribution of the genus, and “set.” to the flowering phenology of C. warszewiczianus. Features a dichotomous, indented key separating Calycolpus from related genera, and another distinguishing the spp. of Calycolpus, as well as synonymy, typology, and technical descriptions for Calycolpus and all of its spp., distribution maps, a section on excluded spp. and, for each accepted sp., summaries of distinguishing features, phenology, and distribution, plus specimen citations (mostly representative). Discussions are provided as needed. There are no indices. The introductory section briefly addresses taxonomic history and morphological features. Several of the spp. are depicted in composite line drawings, or other supplementary illustrations of various kinds. No new taxa are described here, but nine names are lectotypified and three (including C. warszewiczianus) neotypified.

Lehtonen, S., H. Tuomisto, G. Rouhan & M. J. M. Christenhusz. 2010. Phylogenetics and classification of the pantropical fern family Lindsaeaceae. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 163: 305–359.

This study, involving both morphological and molecular data, yields one principal conclusion relevant to Costa Rican floristics: the monospecific genus Ormoloma is deeply embedded within Lindsaea, and should therefore be submerged within the latter. It seems that the combination Lindsaea imrayana (Hook.) Pérez Arbel. is already available for the affected sp.

Luer, C. A. 2010. Systematics of Octomeria (Orchidaceae). Pp. 65–135 in, C. A. Luer, Icones pleurothallidinarum XXXI. Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 120: 1–154.

This is not a complete revision, but deals only with those spp. of Octomeria occurring “north and west of Brazil” (a fact that is made clear in one of the other two versions of the title used in this volume). For Costa Rica, the changes are minimal. Just two spp. of Octomeria were accepted in the Manual account of the genus (by this same author): O. costaricensis Schltr. (with the name O. valerioi Ames & C. Schweinf. in synonymy) and O. graminifolia (L.) R. Br. The principal innovation here is that O. valerioi has been freed from synonymy and applied to a sp. ranging from Nicaragua to Panama, differing from O. costaricensis in its more robust habit and more erose floral labellum, “often with a decurved apiculum at the apex.” The author acknowledges that “intermediate variations make the identity of some collections uncertain,” and La Selva flora wonks will be particularly frustrated that the only relevant collection from that site is apparently one of these (being cited under both names). Some other minor adjustments to the Manual treatment are in order: the overall geographic range of O. costaricensis now includes Cuba (!), and that of O. graminifolia may be revised as follows: “Méx.–Bol. y Ven., Trin. & Tob., O Bras., Antillas Menores.” Includes synonymy, typology, technical descriptions, and discussions at all levels, a dichotomous, indented key to spp., specimen citations (occasionally representative), and a section on excluded spp. All 59 spp. treated here are illustrated with reduced composite line drawings (as usual with this series).

Moran, R. C. & J. Prado. 2010. Megalastrum (Dryopteridaceae) in Central America. Kew Bull. 65: 137–188.

Megalastrum comprises some 90 spp., all but three of which are neotropical. This paper formally revises the Central American members of the genus, totaling 21 spp. Fifteen of these have been recorded from Costa Rica, a center of diversity for Megalastrum. Of the eight spp. described as new in this paper, five are represented in Costa Rica, as follows: the endemic Megalastrum apicale R. C. Moran & J. Prado, widespread at 650–1800 m elevation in the Cordilleras de Tilarán, Central, and de Talamanca, compared with M. acrosorum (Hieron.) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran; M. costipubens R. C. Moran & J. Prado, occurring widely from near sea level to ca. 1150 m elevation (with extensions into Nicaragua and western Panama), compared with M. galeottii (M. Martens) R. C. Moran & J. Prado (a combination validated in this paper); M. glabrum R. C. Moran & J. Prado, found at ca. 1250–1700 m elevation in the Monteverde region (and disjunctly in western Panama), compared with M. atrogriseum (C. Chr.) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran; M. intermedium R. C. Moran & J. Prado, from 1100–2250 m on the Pacific slope of the eastern Cordillera de Talamanca and Fila Cruces (and into western Panama), compared with (i.e., intermediate between) M. lunense (Christ ) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran and M. palmense (Rosenst.) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran; and the endemic M. longiglandulosum R. C. Moran & J. Prado, known only from the Península de Osa, compared with the Antillean M. gilbertii (Clute) R. C. Moran, J. Prado & Labiak. The last-named novelty does not represent a net addition to the Costa Rica flora, as it includes Megalastrum longipilosum A. Rojas var. glandulosum A. Rojas [see The Cutting Edge 16(2): 11, Apr. 2009] as a synonym. Rounding out the list of accepted Megalastrum spp. in Costa Rica are M. atrogriseum, M. ctenitoides A. Rojas, M. dentatum A. Rojas, M. galeottii (with M. longipilosum var. glabrescens A. Rojas in synonymy), M. longipilosum (shorn of its vars.), M. lunense, M. macrotheca (Fée) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran [with M. biseriale (Baker) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran in synonymy], M. palmense, M. pulverulentum (Poir.) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran, and M. squamosum A. Rojas (of which only the last is endemic). Sharp-eyed observers may note the absence from this list of Megalastrum subincisum (Willd.) A. R. Sm. & R. C. Moran, a name that has been much used for Costa Rican material, but is here restricted to a sp. known only from Mexico, Honduras, Colombia, Venezuela, and the Antilles. Includes a dichotomous, indented key to spp., full synonymy and typology, generous sp. descriptions (but no genus description), distribution summaries, exhaustive specimen citations, indications of conservation status, discussions, distribution maps, indices to scientific names and exsiccatae, and an enumeration of spp. by country (facilitating this review!). Richly illustrated with detailed line drawings and photocopies of herbarium specimens (showing partial or overall frond outlines). A minor complaint with the composition of this paper is that all of the maps and illustrations are bunched in the first half; as a result, some of the early sp. entries are absurdly spaced out (the specimen citations for M. atrogriseum begin on p. 149, but do not end until p. 161!), while some of the later ones are inconveniently removed from their corresponding graphics.

Pedraza-Peñalosa, P. 2010. Insensitive blueberries: a total-evidence analysis of Disterigma s.l. (Ericaceae) exploring transformation costs. Cladistics 26: 388–407.

Here is more evidence (haven’t we seen something previously?) that Disterigma trimerum Wilbur & Luteyn, of Costa Rica and Panama, should be removed from the genus (along with several other South American spp.). No alternative repository is proposed.

Pennington, T. D. & A. N. Muellner. 2010. A monograph of Cedrela (Meliaceae). Dh Books, Milborne Port, UK. 112 pp.

A whopping 17 spp. are now recognized in this exclusively neotropical genus, vs. just seven as indicated in the Manual (based on the 1981 Flora Neotropica monograph by the late Brian T. Styles). Four spp. are described here as new, but none of these are from Costa Rica. In fact, there are no substantive changes to the 2007 Manual (Vol. 6) treatment by Quírico Jiménez, with the same four names still accepted and with essentially the same synonymy. It is perhaps worth mentioning that these authors regard Cedrela fissilis Vell. as only “doubtfully present in Panama and Costa Rica,” although there is no indication that they saw the Manual voucher or other germane material. Includes complete synonymy and typology, generous descriptions of the genus and each sp., and a dichotomous (though non-indented) key to spp., plus distribution summaries, representative (mostly) specimen citations, lists of common names and uses, discussions of relationships and conservation status, distribution maps, and indices to exsiccatae and scientific names. The opening section addresses mainly morphology and molecular systematics. All of the spp. are depicted in composite line drawings.

Pupulin, F. & D. Bogarín. 2010. Illustrations and studies in Neotropical Orchidaceae—the Lepanthes jimenezii group (Pleurothallidinae). Harvard Pap. Bot. 15: 111–121.

This paper inaugurates a new series focusing “on discrete groups of Neotropical orchid taxa, providing full and comparable species descriptions and illustrations for taxonomic discussion.” The maiden contribution tackles the Lepanthes jimenezii Schltr. group, comprising three spp. of Costa Rica and Panama characterized by “hispid ramicauls and suborbicular leaves, the inflorescences larger than the leaves and provided with ciliate bracts, the muriculate ovary, the suborbicular to orbicular, ciliate blades of the lip, and the column with distinct apical arms.” The group was not really a group until now, as two of its three spp. are here described as new: Lepanthes caroli-lueri Bogarín & Pupulin, endemic to Costa Rica at 750–1700 m elevation on the Atlantic slope (and near the Continental Divide) of the Cordilleras de Tilarán and Central; and L. pulcherrima Endrés ex Bogarín & Pupulin, which has been found at 1300 m elevation in the Montes del Aguacate, and also in western Panama (Prov. Bocas del Toro). The latter sp. was first collected by A. R. Endrés, who supplied the epithet. Material of both new spp. had been determined by Manual Lepanthes contributor Carlyle Luer as L. jimenezii, the Manual voucher for which is one of the paratypes of L. caroli-lueri. By the same token, the Manual voucher for Lepanthes crossota Luer is cited in the present paper under L. jimenezii, to which L. crossota is subordinated as a synonym. According to the citations provided in the present paper, the Manual distribution paragraph of L. jimenezii might be adjusted as follows: “Bosque húmedo, muy húmedo y pluvial, 850–1450 m; vert. Carib. Cord. Central, vert. Pac. Cord. de Tilarán, Montes del Aguacate, Valle Central.” Also, it is no longer a Costa Rican endemic, but extends to western Panama. Includes a dichotomous key to the three spp. in the group. As promised, all are illustrated, with excellent composite line drawings by the second author (plus some supplementary photos).

—— & A. Karremans. 2010. Two new species and a new record of Epidendrum (Orchidaceae: Laeliinae) from Costa Rica. Selbyana 30: 195–202.

The two new spp. are Epidendrum fulfordianum Pupulin & Karremans, most similar to E. chlorocorymbos Schltr., and Epidendrum pseudobarbeyanum Pupulin & Karremans, compared, not surprisingly, to E. barbeyanum Kraenzl. Each of the new spp. is based on a single collection by the first author, the first tracing to the Baja Talamanca region, the second from 1500 m in Zona Protectora Las Tablas. The ostensible new record, involving Epidendrum villotae Hágsater & Dodson, is not really new, as the authors themselves discovered belatedly; the sp. in question had already been reported from Costa Rica by its first author [see The Cutting Edge 16(3): 5–6, Jul. 2009]. Nevertheless, it is here described in full and illustrated in a superb, full-page composite line drawing, as are both of the new spp.

——, H. Medina & D. Bogarín. 2010. Zwei Lepanthes (Orchidaceae: Pleurothallidinae) mit stark reduzierter Korolla/Two Lepanthes (Orchidaceae: Pleurothallidinae) with strongly reduced corolla. OrchideenJ. 17: 116–123.

Lepanthes vestigialis Bogarín & Pupulin is the only one of these novelties attributed to Costa Rica, where it is endemic. According to the cited collections (mainly of the authors), the known range may be specified as follows: Bosque muy húmedo, 700–900 m; vert. Carib. N Cord. de Talamanca. As suggested by the title of the article, the new sp. is characterized by its extremely reduced petals. Illustrated by an excellent composite line drawing (by the first author of the sp.) and a color photo of a flower in life. Fully bilingual (German/English).

This new orchid sp., together with the four reported in the two previous entries and two from our last issue, boosts our world-famous running count of Orchidaceae described from Costa Rica since ca. 1993 to 299 (and yes, Gongora boracayanensis was already accounted for).

Riina, R., B. van Ee, A. C. Wiedenhoeft, A. Cardozo & P. E. Berry. 2010. Sectional rearrangement of arborescent clades of Croton (Euphorbiaceae) in South America: evolution of arillate seeds and a new species, Croton domatifer. Taxon 59: 1147–1160.

This is a meaty paper, but just one tidbit falls within our narrow purview of interest: the synonymization of the Colombian Croton stipuliformis J. Murillo under C. skutchii Standl., with the consequent loss of Costa Rican endemic status for the latter sp. We had congratulated ourselves on noticing this small detail, knew about it in plenty of time to make the change for our upcoming Manual Vol. 5 (featuring Euphorbiaceae), and even believed that we had. However, checking the final proofs we now learn, to our chagrin, that somehow this fell through the cracks, so C. skutchii will be erroneously flagged as “ENDÉMICA.” File this under “Annotate Your Copy”!

Rojas-Alvarado, A. F. 2009. Dos especies nuevas y cuatro nuevos registros de Diplazium (Athyriaceae) con fronda pinnada para el neotrópico. MES 4(3): 23–28.

Both of the new spp. are South American, and none of the new records directly involves Costa Rica. However, we were surprised to see Costa Rica listed among the countries of known distribution for Diplazium paucipinnum Stolze, an unfamiliar name to us. Checking the herbarium, we learn that the author is now using this name for the sp. that was treated as D. palmense Rosenst. in Flora mesoamericana Vol. 1 (1995). The latter name, in turn, he now applies to some (but not all) of the material that had previously comprised D. obscurum Christ. And so it goes.

——. 2010. Novelties in the Saccoloma inaequale complex (Saccolomataceae) from the neotropics. MES 5(1): 1–15.

Not too long ago, as recently as the appearance of Flora mesoamericana Vol. 1 (1995), all the Mesoamerican material of Saccoloma with 2–4-pinnate leaves was referred to S. inaequale (Kunze) Mett., with the exception of one collection of S. domingense (Spreng.) C. Chr. from the Península de Osa. But even before that time, several workers had noted significant differences between lowland and montane populations included within the concept of S. inaequale. In 1996, the author of the present paper, believing that the name S. inaequale applied correctly to the montane plants, published Saccoloma moranii A. Rojas to accommodate the lowland material. But now, things have gotten way more complicated. In the first place, the author has decided that he was mistaken initially, and that the name S. inaequale (the basionym of which he has now seen an isotype) actually applies to the lowland plants. Thus, his S. moranii falls into synonymy, and a different name is needed for the montane material. Wait, make that four different names! So now there are five, where once was just one. Two of the four newly accepted names in the Saccoloma inaequale complex represent new spp., both occurring in Costa Rica: Saccoloma quadripinnatum A. Rojas, known from a single Costa Rican station (but southward to Colombia), and the more widely distributed S. sunduei A. Rojas (south to Ecuador, but skipping Panama). The remaining two new names comprise new combinations, just one of which pertains to Costa Rica: Saccoloma nigrescens (Mett.) A. Rojas (based on S. inaequale var. nigrescens Mett.), referring to the most widely distributed montane sp. of this group in Costa Rica, which ranges southward to Perú and Venezuela. The fifth sp. in the group, Saccoloma galeottii (Fée) A. Rojas comb. nov. (based on Microlepia galeottii Fée), ranges from southern Mexico to northern Nicaragua. The differences among all of these entities (mostly involving rhizome-scale morphology and frond architecture) are expressed in a dichotomous (but non-indented) key to all 10 neotropical Saccoloma spp. recognized by the author (and also, allegedly, in a table, which seems to have been omitted). An amended description is provided for S. inaequale, supplemented by abundant specimen citations. All five spp. are illustrated with excellent line drawings showing appropriate details.

——. 2010. A new species in Elaphoglossum sect. Elaphoglossum subsect. Pachyglossa (Dryopteridaceae) from Costa Rica and Panama. Novon 20: 334–337.

The author has considered the name Elaphoglossum lankesteri Mickel (presumably on the basis of its holotype) to be a synonym of E. cismense Rosenst., but acknowledges that three of its paratypes indeed represent a different sp., here described as new. Elaphoglossum skutchianum A. Rojas sp. nov. is widespread in the Costa Rican cordilleras at 400–1200(–1600) m elevation, and extends far into western Panama. It differs from E. cismense in its strictly epiphytic habitat (vs. generally terrestrial), longer rhizome scales, sterile fronds longer than the fertile fronds (vs. subequal or shorter) and with evident (vs. mostly obscure) veins, and lower altidudinal distribution. Illustrated with various line drawings.

Rua, G. H., P. R. Speranza, M. Vaio & M. Arakaki. 2010. A phylogenetic analysis of the genus Paspalum (Poaceae) based on cpDNA and morphology. Pl. Syst. Evol. 288: 227–243.

Paspalum is paraphyletic with respect to the ditypic, Brazilian Thrasyopsis, which it must thus absorb. Also, an anomalous sp. (not occurring in Costa Rica) traditionally included in Paspalum must be removed.

Samain, M.-S., S. Wanke & P. Goetghebeur. 2010. Unraveling extensive paraphyly in the genus Hydrangea s. l. with implications for the systematics of tribe Hydrangeeae. Syst. Bot. 35: 593–600.

Hydrangea is paraphyletic with respect to eight other genera, including several (Decumaria, Deinanthe, Schizophragma) that are more or less familiar in cultivation. The lumping option (inclusion of these genera in Hydrangea) is suggested by the authors. For the Manual, this would only mean that the genus total for Hydrangeaceae would have to be corrected from 17 to 9, and the sp. total for Hydrangea from 21 to something on the order of 60.

Sauvêtre, P. 2009. Maxillaria lehmannii and its namesake. Orchid Rev. 117: 200–205.

The orchid is of no concern to us, but the namesake, Friedrich Carl Lehmann, may be. We are provided with a portrait and brief biography of Lehmann, who collected mainly in Colombia and Ecuador, but briefly in Costa Rica (which is scarcely mentioned). Eventually he settled in Popayán, Colombia, raised a family, and died tragically in a boating mishap on the Río Timbiquí in 1903, at just 52 years of age. He left a grandson, Federico Carlos Lehmann Valencia (1914–1974), who gained considerable fame as a zoologist and founded the natural history museums in Cali and Popayán.

Schaefer, H. & S. S. Renner. 2010. A gift from the New World? The West African crop Cucumeropsis mannii and the American Posadaea sphaerocarpa (Cucurbitaceae) are the same species. Syst. Bot. 35: 534–540.

Well, maybe they are. The authors’ morphological and molecular data “show that Cucumeropsis mannii Naudin and Posadaea sphaerocarpa Cogn. must be placed in the same genus,” and that “one could therefore treat” them “as representing a single taxonomic species, perhaps with two subspecies.” Accepting that a single sp. is involved, and if combining Cucumeropsis and Posadaea were the end of the story, then Cucumeropsis mannii would become the operative name for the sp. currently known as Posadaea sphaerocarpa in Costa Rica (and so treated in our upcoming Manual volume). However, both Cucumeropsis and Posadaea are nested within Melothria, together with a monospecific Brazilian genus, leading the authors to suggest “that all these genera are probably best included in a more broadly circumscribed Melothria” (a procedure said to be “in press”). Because the binomial Melothria mannii Cogn. already exists, we assume that our guy will become M. sphaerocarpa (leaving no nomenclatural trace of the Cucumeropsis connection). Incidentally, C. mannii is cultivated in sub-Saharan Africa for its edible seeds, and the authors note that the seeds of Posadaea sphaerocarpa have also been eaten in the New World. The authors hypothesize that Cucumeropsis was dispersed transatlantically in recent times, “most likely from the neotropics to Africa” (rather than the other way around).

Scheen, A.-C., M. Bendiksby, O. Ryding, C. Mathiesen, V. A. Albert & C. Lindqvist. 2010. Molecular phylogenetics, character evolution, and suprageneric classification of Lamioideae (Lamiaceae). Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 97: 191–217.

As according to its title, the theme of this paper is largely outside of our interest. It is, however, worth noting that Stachys appears paraphyletic (with repect to several smallish genera), as does Leonurus (with respect to a monospecific Eurasian genus). These issues are not pursued in depth.

Steele, P. R. 2010. Taxonomic revision of the Neotropical genus Psiguria (Cucurbitaceae). Syst. Bot. 35: 341–357.

A previous paper helmed by this same author [see this column, The Cutting Edge 17(2), Apr. 2010] heralded this revision and provided most of the salient details relevant to Costa Rican floristics. Here we get the whole shebang, including full synonymy and typology and detailed technical descriptions at all levels, two dichotomous, indented keys to spp. (one for staminate material, another for sterile or pistillate material), distribution and phenology summaries, a discussion, representative specimen citations, a distribution map for each sp., and a section on excluded taxa. The introductory pages briefly discuss taxonomic history, phylogeny, morphology and distribution, and, more extensively, ecology and natural history. Illustrated with photos and drawings of selected details.

Stone, D. E. 2010. Review of New World Alfaroa and Old World Alfaropsis (Juglandaceae). Novon 20: 215–224.

Two new developments, variously impacting Costa Rican floristics, are reported in this paper by Juglandaceae juggernaut Donald E. Stone (DUKE). Mexican and Guatemalan material of Alfaroa costaricensis Standl. is here distinguished as A. c. subsp. septentrionalis D. E. Stone, subsp. nov., thereby establishing the autonymic subsp. for the Costa Rican and Panamanian populations; incidentally, the overall geographic range for A. costaricensis given in the Manual should be amended to add “Ver.” (following “Chis.” within the parentheses) and to delete “Nic.” (we can’t trace where that came from). On a more serious note, we lose another Costa Rican endemic as the author demotes his Alfaroa guanacastensis D. E. Stone to synonymy under A. manningii J. León (though the latter remains endemic to Costa Rica). Six taxa of Alfaroa (including all of those occurring in Costa Rica) are compared morphologically in a tabular format.

Taylor, C. M. & R. E. Gereau. 2010. Rubiacearum americanarum magna hama pars XXIII: overview of the Guettardeae tribe in Central and South America, with five new species and three new combinations in Chomelia, Neoblakea, Pittoniotis, and Stenostomum. Novon 20: 351–362.

This time around, the big bucket yields one new sp. and two new combinations relevant to Costa Rican floristics. The former is Chomelia costaricensis C. M. Taylor, based on a single collection (Rivera 1376) from 770 m elevation on the Atlantic slope of the Cordillera de Guanacaste. Among its Costa Rican congeners, the most similar sp. is C. microloba Donn. Sm., which differs in having axillary domatia on the abaxial side of its leaf-blades and shorter corollas. The two new combinations, Stenostomum acreanum (K. Krause) C. M. Taylor and S. turrialbanum (N. Zamora & Poveda) C. M. Taylor, pertain to spp. segregated from Guettarda on the basis of recent molecular evidence [see The Cutting Edge 13(3): 3, Jul. 2006]. A dichotomous, indented key to these and related genera reveals that Stenostomum differs from Guettarda by its resinous stem apices and stipules and pyrenes often with a central “locule or space.” Chomelia costaricensis is depicted in a composite line drawing.

Torke, B. M. & N. A. Zamora. 2010. Notes on Swartzia (Leguminosae) in Central America preliminary to the Flora Mesoamericana, with descriptions of two new species from Costa Rica. Brittonia 62: 222–232.

This arrives a day late and a dollar short for the purposes of Manual Vol. 5, though we would easily have been able to incorporate all of its critical new information had we received a pdf around the time of the issue date (“1 September 2010”) printed at the bottom of the first page (or even a few weeks thereafter). C’est la vie. Both of the new spp. described here will be treated in full in our upcoming volume but, unfortunately, under provisional names: Swartzia picramnioides Standl. & L. O. Williams ex Torke & N. Zamora (invalidly published as “Swartzia picramnoides Standl. & L. O. Williams” in Paul Allen’s Rain forests of Golfo Dulce) corresponds to “Swartzia sp. A,” while S. zeledonensis Torke & N. Zamora evidently corresponds to “Swartzia sp. B” (though the Manual voucher for the latter is not cited here). The Manual Fabaceae treatment (by the second author of this paper) also includes a “Swartzia sp. C,” the voucher for which is discussed in this paper as a “remarkable” collection that may or may not belong to S. zeledonensis. Distribution maps and composite line drawings (by the first author) are provided for each new sp., as well as a dichotomous and indented key to all the Swartzia spp. in Mexico and Central America. Watch for Manual Vol. 5 for added information about these two new spp. (as well as some surprises).

van Ee, B. & P. E. Berry. 2010. Typification notes for Croton (Euphorbiaceae). Harvard Pap. Bot. 15: 73–84.

A lectotype designation for Croton trinitatis Millsp., evidently not affecting prevailing usage, would appear to be the only detail directly relevant to Costa Rican floristics.


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