One of the largest (ca. 450 accepted names) and most widely distributed genera of Bromeliaceae is Pitcairnia, with species occurring in Mexico, Central America, the West Indies, and throughout much of South America. The present study developed a phylogenetic hypothesis based on macro- and micromorphology, and tested the monophyly of the genus and subgenera, as well as the position of P. feliciana. The study included 67 species of Pitcairnia and 12 outgroup taxa selected to represent the morphological diversity and areas of endemism of Bromeliaceae. The results supported the monophyly of Pitcairnia, as indicated by two non-homoplasious and five homoplasious synapomorphies. Pitcairnia subgenus Pepinia and Pitcairnia subgenus Pitcairnia did not form a monophyletic group. Pitcairnia feliciana appeared to be related to the Atlantic Forest taxa. Phylogenetic relationships among the species recorded in the three Brazilian phytogeographic domains (Atlantic Forest, Cerrado, and Amazon) were obtained, and the relationships showed that the members of Pitcairnia occupied the three Brazilian domains through several routes.
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Vol. 40 • No. 3