Synechanthus, a genus of two species, is widely distributed from southern Mexico through Central America to the Pacific coast of Colombia and Ecuador. Univariate, bivariate, and multivariate statistical methods, based on data taken from herbarium specimens, were used to examine morphological variation between and within species. The species are clearly distinguished based on qualitative variables, and means of most quantitative variables are significantly different between the two. Synechanthus warscewiczianus is distributed more or less continuously from Nicaragua to Ecuador. No variables are correlated with latitude, but three are correlated with elevation. In central Panama, small-sized plants occur on three isolated peaks. These can be separated from larger-sized plants with discriminant analysis, and two of the three small-sized populations can be separated from each other. The distribution of S. fibrosus, from Mexico to Costa Rica, encompasses three separate populations that can be distinguished from one another by discriminant analysis. No variables are correlated with elevation or latitude.
Communicating Editor: Fred R. Barrie