Lowry, P.P., II, G.M. Plunkett, M.R. Gostel & D.G. Frodin (2017). A synopsis of the Afro-Malagasy species previously included in Schefflera (Araliaceae): resurrection of the genera Astropanax and Neocussonia. Candollea 72: 265–282. In English, English abstract.
Phylogenetic studies have shown that Schefflera J.R. Forst. & G. Forst., the largest genus of Araliaceae, is grossly polyphyletic, representing five distinct clades within the family, and that one of these clades, comprising species from continental Africa, Madagascar, the Comoro Islands and the Seychelles, contains two morphologically distinct subclades. In an effort to establish monophyletic genera among the elements that have been treated in Schefflera over the last several decades, we resurrect the genera Astropanax Seem. (15 species) and Neocussonia (Harms) Hutch. (16 species) to encompass the members of the two “Afro-Malagasy” subclades. In this synoptical revision, we provide updated generic descriptions along with a key to the genera, and make 26 new combinations. A lectotype is designated for each genus, a neotype is provided for one accepted species name, and lectotypes are designated for 16 accepted species names and 12 heterotypic synonyms. For each accepted species, full synonymy is provided along with complete citation of type specimens and an indication of habitat and geographic range.
Received: September 14, 2016; Accepted: May 5, 2017; First published online: June 24, 2017