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Taxonomic relationships between Blossfeldia liliputana Werdermann and other members of the Cactoideae have not been fully clear due to morphological and anatomical peculiarities of this diminutive species. Current classifications place Blossfeldia in Tribe Notocacteae Buxbaum due to similarities in seed morphology with Parodia microsperma Weber (Spegazzini). Following an extensive molecular study by Nyffeler, the phylogenetic placement of Blossfeldia was shown to be as the sister lineage to the Cactoideae, a finding which Nyffeler considered extremely intriguing. A number of hypotheses have been advanced to explain Nyffeler's puzzle. In this paper, the author investigates the phylogenetic position of Blossfeldia through the use of the presence/absence of the chloroplast rpoC1 intron, which is missing in all members of Cactoideae sampled to date. Blossfeldia possesses the rpoC1 intron, thus supporting Nyffeler's previous findings and dismissing other hypotheses regarding Blossfeldia. A new tribe, Blossfeldieae, is described for Blossfeldia.
Short-shoot leaves on the terminal stem segments of the drought-deciduous desert shrub ocotillo (Fouquieria splendens) are retained long after long-shoot leaves are lost through senescence and abscission. This formerly unreported observation has relevance for determining whether a terminal stem segment is new or old, because newly produced segments are routinely associated with the presence of long-shoot leaves. It is now clear that the absence of long-shoot leaves on a terminal stem segment cannot be used as unequivocal evidence that the segment is old. The relatively rapid loss of long-shoot leaves from new terminal stem segments may be an adaptation to reduce herbivory by accelerating maturation of the spine that develops from tissues left by each senescing long-shoot petiole.
Tunilla picardoi is here validated, preserving a new specimen from the original collection. It is an opuntioid species characterized by subtriangular segments, short inconsistent spines and large, reddish-orange flowers.
We report the description of Euphorbia gilbertiana, a new, distinctive, dwarf succulent from Southern Ethiopia, found not far from the Somali border. Its carunculate seeds and four green glands ally this species most closely with members of section Eremophyton, such as E. pirottae. With its fleshy and compact habit, its long, lax rays and its almost glabrous habit, E. gilbertiana is clearly differentiated from the annual species E. pirottae.
Aloe jibisana has freely branching, sprawling, leafy stems and a simple or 1-branched inflorescence with yellow flowers. So far it is known only from near the summit of Jibisa Mountain near the Kenya–Ethiopia border.
In 1860 Benedict Roezl discovered a plant in northwestern Guerrero, Mexico which he described as Ghiesbreghtia dentata. Specimens raised from seeds of his collection were known in Belgian gardens as “Agave Ghiesbreghtii dentata,” and Jacobi (1865) described them as A. debaryana. This is the oldest name for A. pedunculifera, described by Trelease (1920) and, as a comparison of the characters shows, this plant is nearly identical with A. attenuata Salm-Dyck (1834). A new combination is therefore made: A. attenuata Salm-Dyck ssp dentata (Roezl) Ullrich. The neotype is Rzedowski & McVaugh #289 (43 km W of Chilpancingo, Guerrero, 2000 m; 31.1.1965; ECBN isoneotype at MICH). In the future it may be possible to distinguish the northern populations along the Sinaloa-Durango border as subspecies pedunculifera.
Seven mostly long-stemmed species of Echeveria Series Nudae and many intermediate forms from the Andes of Venezuela to northern Peru have gametic chromosome numbers of 21 or 22, and a few are tetraploids with 42 or 44. They hybridize freely with each other in cultivation. In the hybrids most of their chromosomes form pairs at meiosis. All species in Series Nudae appear to be very closely related and probably descended from progenitors that arrived only recently in South America. They can also hybridize with species of most genera of Mexican Crassulaceae and belong with them in the same vast comparium of more than 200 species. In these hybrids, segments of their chromosomes can pair with segments of chromosomes from other species and genera, but no part of any of them can pair with any other chromosome of their own basic (conspecific) genomes. Each of the 21 or 22 gametic chromosomes differs from one another, and there is no evidence of any polyploidy in their ancestry. Acaulescent or short-stemmed species, mostly from farther south, are classed with a different series, the Racemosae.
Turkey is one of the most important areas in Eurasia for its high number of Sedum species. Such diversity of sedums is a result of extreme altitudinal differences providing a wealth of habitats such as rocky slopes in deep, disjunct valleys. This, coupled with a variety of rock types, means that unique niches for plant evolution are many. Sedum diversity in Turkey was evaluated with regard to geographical distribution and associated landscape characteristics. Endemic and rare, non-endemic Sedum species were noted. As a result of this review study, we accept 44 stonecrop taxa including 11 endemics, 1 rare non-endemic, 5 subspecies and 4 varieties, which are mapped according to their geographical distributions using Davis's square system. Because Hylotelephium (1 sp), Phedimus (4 spp) and Prometheum (2 spp) have been not accepted by the RHS (Royal Horticultural Society, UK), who still consider them to be Sedum, we use the latter throughout.
Six little-known Crassulaceae from central Peru are discussed. (1) Echeveria excelsa, the largest species of this genus in Peru, is found for the first time at its type locality since Weberbauer's visit in 1906, and a new type is designated for it; (2) Sedum andinum is perhaps the smallest Sedum species in Peru; it has almost spherical leaves, and its red-and-white flowers are difficult to observe. (3) Sedum incarum (Ball) Pino is a new combination for Villadia incarum; its inflorescence is an obscure and variable cyme, which earlier may have been misinterpreted as a raceme. (4) Sedum decipiens has been recollected for the first time since its discovery. It is rare in habitat and has a distinctive inflorescence forming a diffuse monochasium. (5) Sedum renzopalmae Pino is presented as a new species with yellow flowers. (6) Villadia virgata remains as the only valid species of Villadia in Peru, though there is evidence that other species may exist.
Twenty new combinations were published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal between January 2004 and December 2006. Here we include the Latin diagnosis, holotype information and original citation for the following combinations that were published therein: Aloe alexandrei Ellert, Aloe irafensis Lavranos, McCoy & Gifri,Aloe koenenii Lavranos & K. Koch, Aloe orlandi Lavranos, Aloe pronkii Lavranos, Rakouth & McCoy, Antimima levynsiae (L. Bolus) S. A. Hammer, Bulbine erumpens S. A. Hammer, Drosanthemum anemophilumvan Jaarsveld & S. A. Hammer, Echeveria cuspidatavargemmula Kimnach, Echeveria cuspidatavarzaragozae Kimnach,Echeveria unguiculata Kimnach, Euphorbia bertemariae Dioli & Bisseret, Facheiroa braunii Esteves, Kalanchoe ×houghtonii D. B. Ward, Opuntia ×carstenii R. Puente & C. Hamann, Pachypodium mikea J. Lüthy, Pachypodium rosulatumsspbemarahense J. Lüthy & Lavranos, Phyllobolus pearsonii N. E. Br. ex S. A. Hammer, Pilosocereus mollispinus P. J. Braun & Esteves and Rhytidocaulon arachnoideum McCoy.