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Convergence in the endangered European bee-orchid species Ophrys kotschyi was studied using a molecular phylogenetic approach. We sequenced the nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (nrITS) and the Rrn5—TrnR intron of the chloroplast DNA (cpIGS) to resolve conflicting interpretations of its relationships. Some authors include all morphologically similar Greek taxa in the study species, others believe that similarity results from convergent evolution driven by a shared pollinator. Parsimony-based network building and three approaches of phylogenetic tree reconstruction provided a basic insight into the phylogeny of the studied taxa, revealing that the inclusion of the various Greek taxa in O. kotschyi results in a polyphyletic species. This implies the consideration of the species as a narrow endemic to Cyprus, and corroborates the view that convergent evolution is responsible for apparent morphological similarity. Additionally, nrITS sequencing revealed additive polymorphic sites in the nrITS, which implies significant inter-specific gene flow.
We used matrix population models to analyse spatial and temporal variation in the demography of the Siberian primrose (Primula nutans ssp. finmarchica var. jokelae), an early successional species of seashore meadows in the Gulf of Bothnia. We compared the dynamics of populations in habitats that were partially overgrown by woody shrubs with those in open ones. The major threat to the populations was the invasion of the habitat by woody plants, as population growth was very sensitive to a change in the transition from a sterile rosette to a flowering one and this transition occurred less frequently in overgrown meadows. This transition also had the greatest contribution to the differences in population growth rates between habitats. Although the invasion of shrubs negatively influenced population growth rate, most populations are still expected to persist and only two small populations out of eleven examined populations were expected to disappear within 50 years. However, with proper habitat management the problem of coarse-scale interactions, such as asymmetric competition for light with shrubs, can be substantially alleviated.
The relationship between the present distribution of some vascular plants in managed forests and forest history was investigated in western Poland. A forest inventory report was used as the source of data for plant distribution in the 211 subcompartments of the forest, and archive maps for the stand history assessment. The “history” of a sub-compartment (ancient vs. recent) increases the parsimony of the models, as assessed with AIC, explaining understory plant species occurrence. Occurrences of Vaccinium myrtillus and Pteridium aquilinum appeared to be most reliable predictors of forest history. Among the 110 sub-compartments where the two species were recorded, 103 were covered by ancient forest. The two plant species selected as reliable predictors of ancient forest continuity also appeared to be significant predictors of forest history in the nearby control area. The use of indicator species described in the reports may be an attractive source of knowledge on the ecosystem.
The green alga Printzina (Trentepohlia) lagenifera was found in southern Finland in the sori of the leaves of the indigenous fern Polypodium vulgare. The find is noteworthy because P. lagenifera occurred epiphyllous in a boreal, natural habitat. The subcosmopolitan P. lagenifera is a collective species; it was described from a hothouse in Germany. Two earlier finds from Finland are likewise from hothouses. The present alga is hardly conspecific with these lignicolous hothouse algae that most probably are introductions from the tropics. Another green alga, the common Desmococcus olivaceus (Chaetophorales) is reported to occur in Finland on the upper surfaces of the leaves of Polypodium vulgare.
The phylogeographic relationships between the Macaronesian islands and southern glacial refugia of the Iberian Peninsula was studied using molecular markers and two mosses as model species: Exsertotheca intermedia from Macaronesia and the recently described Neckera baetica from the Iberian Peninsula. The new combination Exsertotheca baetica (Guerra) Draper, González-Mancebo, O. Werner, J. Patiño & Ros is proposed for the latter. The genus Neckera has recently undergone considerable systematic and taxonomic changes, but our results show that the European species N. cephalonica and N. pumila belong in Neckera s. stricto.
Saussurea megacephala C.C. Chang ex Y.S. Chen, sp. nova (Asteraceae) is described and illustrated from southeastern Xizang, China. Its morphology is compared with that of S. przewalskii and S. semifasciata.
Helichrysum unicapitatum S.G. Şenol, Ö. Seçmen & B. Öztürk (Asteraceae) is described and illustrated from the SW province of Anatolia, Turkey. It grows on crystalline calcareous rocks between Evran Tepe and Karababa Tepe (1800–2300 m), situated within the Denizli Babadağ (Cadmus) Mountain Range. Helichrysum compactum seems to be its closest relative and their affinities are discussed based on morphological data and DNA sequences (nrDNA ITS and ETS).
Silene ferdowsii Joharchi, Nejati & F. Ghahrem. sp. nova (Caryophyllaceae), from sect. Auriculatae, is described from Khorassan province, NE Iran. It is morphologically most similar to S. albescens, especially in its indumentums, but differs in having longer internodes and crowded stems. Silene ferdowsii is also compared with S. eriocalycinae and S. sisianica.
Based on morphological observations and phytogeographical considerations, two new combinations are provided in Stipa section Smirnovia (Poaceae), a group of taxa mainly distributed in central Asia: Stipa lingua Junge subsp. lipskyi (Roshev.) R. Gonzalo comb. & stat. nov. and Stipa lingua subsp. magnifica (A. Junge) R. Gonzalo comb. & stat. nov. Stipa ovczinnikovii Roshev. is recognized as a taxonomic synonym of S. lingua. A key to the subspecies of S. lingua is provided.
Liparis cheniana X.H. Jin sp. nova (Orchidaceae), is described and illustrated from southwestern Xizang (Tibet), China. It is restricted to the alpine region of the Gaoligongshan Mountains at an elevation of about 3700 m. Liparis cheniana is similar to L. rostrata in having two calli at the base of the column, but differs from it by having a lanceolate and acuminate lip with a ridge ranging from the base to the tip.
Parasenecio dissectus Y.S. Chen, sp. nova (Asteraceae) from Hubei province (China) is described and illustrated. It is similar to P. sinicus, but differs from it by its much larger leaves usually with more lobes, smaller capitula, five phyllaries and florets, longer florets, shorter achenes and white pappus. Parasenecio levingii (C.B. Clarke) Y.S. Chen, comb. nova is proposed based on Senecio levingii from west Himalayan region.
We describe two new species, Elaeocarpus gaoligongshanensis Y. Tang & Z.L. Dao and E. dianxiensis Y. Tang & H. Li, from western Yunnan of China. Having two ovules per loculus, the new species belong to sect. Elaeocarpus. The distinguishing characteristics separating them from the morphologically closest relatives are discussed.
Based on field studies of morphology and the study of type specimens, a Chinese species of bamboo previously recognized as Drepanostachyum exauritum W.T. Lin is treated as Dendrocalamus exauritus (W.T. Lin) N.H. Xia & Y.B. Guo, comb. nova.
Linaria turcica S. Makbul & Hamzaoğlu sp. nova from Artvin (Yusufeli) province, NE Turkey, is described. It is compared with its morphologically closest match L. genistifolia, from which it differs in several macro- and micromorphological characters.
Microstegium butuoense Y.C. Liu & H. Peng, a new species of Poaceae from S Sichuan, SW China, is described and illustrated. It resembles M. falconeri, but differs by the internode length, spikelet length, and characters of the upper lemma and upper palea.
Glyptopetalum pallidifolium (Hayata) Q.R. Liu & S.Y. Meng, comb. nova (Celastraceae) is proposed here based on Euonymus pallidifolia Hayata from Pingtung Hsien, Taiwan. Glyptopetalum is a new generic record for Taiwan. The characters of capsule and flower of this species are described, and the difference between Euonymus and Glyptopetalum is discussed.
Chirita lijiangensis B. Pan & W.B. Xu, a new species of Gesneriaceae from Guangxi, China, is described and illustrated. It is similar to C. pteropoda, but differs by its leaf blade that is densely pilose on both surfaces; by the leaf base being cuneate to broadly cuneate; by the peduncle, the pedicel and calyx being densely pilose; by the corolla that is purple, 2.2–2.8 cm long, and with a slender, ca. 1.5 cm long tube; by the filaments being purple, ca. 8 mm long, and glabrous; by the lateral staminodes that are ca.1 mm long; and by the the pubescent, ca. 4 mm long ovary.