Translator Disclaimer
2 September 2001 Welwitschia mirabilis (Welwitschiaceae), male cone characters and a new subspecies
Author Affiliations +
Abstract

Based on the observation of male cones in plants of old stock of Welwitschia mirabilis cultivated in the Botanic Garden Berlin-Dahlem and documented in the garden herbarium, two groups can be distinguished. Plants of “group 1” are characterized by short peduncles and long, purplish brown male cones with widely overlapping bracts. Plants of “group 2” are regularly flowering about three weeks later and have usually longer peduncles but shorter male cones which are glaucous-green to salmon coloured and more “sculptured” due to different bract shape and less overlapping bracts. Tracking the incompletely documented origin of these accessions revealed that some of the over 50 years old plants were grown from seeds received from Coimbra originating from Angola and others from seeds received from Kirstenbosch originating from Namibia. Published illustrations of male cones provided only limited further evidence on cone characters. Examination of herbarium specimens of known origin showed that male cone characters fully agreeing with those of group 1 occur in material from Angola, whereas cone characters of plants of group 2 are typical for specimens from Namibia, particularly from the Swakop area. The differences suggest the existence of two subspecies. The controversial nomenclature of W. bainesii and the reasons for avoiding this epithet for the subspecies are briefly discussed. Instead the new combination W. mirabilis subsp. namibiana is validated. A lectotype is designated for the binomial W. mirabilis. As a further result, a total of three male cones with bracts arranged in verticils of three, instead of the regular two, were found among more than 3000 cones screened. One was found on a plant of group 1 grown at Berlin-Dahlem, one in a sample originally received from J. D. Hooker probably of Angolan origin, and one in a herbarium specimen from Namibia.

See the PDF.

References

1.

Anonymous, 1898: The Welwitschia. — Gard. Chron. 24: 62 (+ fig. 15), 63 (+ fig. 16), 68. Google Scholar

2.

Anonymous, 1975: Report of the Standing Committee on Stabilization of Specific Names. — Taxon 24: 171–200. Google Scholar

3.

Anonymous, (undated): Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. Blütenstand / inflorescence (copyright Thomas Stützel). —  http://www.biologie.uni-ulm.de/cgi-bin/picture?id=929 (retrieved 29 January 2001). Google Scholar

4.

W. Barthlott & N. Ehler 1977: Raster-Elektronenmikroskopie der Epidermis-Oberflächen von Spermatophyten. — Trop.-Subtrop. Pflanzenwelt 19. Google Scholar

5.

W. Barthlott, G. Rauer, P. L. Ibisch, M. von den Driesch & W. Lobin 1999: Biodiversität und Botanische Gärten. — Pp. i–vii, 1–24 in: Bundesamt für Naturschutz (ed.), Botanische Gärten und Biodiversität. — Bonn. Google Scholar

6.

H. Baum 1903: Kunene-Sambesi-Expedition. — Berlin. Google Scholar

7.

L. Benson 1970a: Welwitschia mirabilis in the Namib Desert, South West Africa. — Cact. Succ. J. (Los Angeles) 42: 195–200. Google Scholar

8.

H. Baum 1970b: The status of Welwitschia mirabilis — Cact. Succ. J. (Los Angeles) 42: 200. Google Scholar

9.

C. Biswas & B. M. Johri 1997: The gymnosperms. — Berlin, etc. Google Scholar

10.

C. H. Bornman 1977: Welwitschia mirabilis: Structural and functional anomalies. — Madoqua 10: 21–31. Google Scholar

11.

C. H. Bornman 1978: Welwitschia, paradox of a parched paradise. — Cape Town. Google Scholar

12.

F. von Breitenbach & J. von Breitenbach 1992: Tree atlas of southern Africa. Section 1. — Pretoria. Google Scholar

13.

E. Brinckmann & D. J. von Willert 1987: Injury and recovery of Welwitschia mirabilis. — Dinteria 19: 69–76. Google Scholar

14.

É.-A. Carrière 1867: Traité général des conifères. — Paris. Google Scholar

15.

C. J. Chamberlain 1934: Gymnosperms. Structure and evolution. — Chicago. Google Scholar

16.

P. Craven & C. Marais 1986: Namib flora. Swakopmund to the giant Welwitschia via Goanikontes. — Gamsberg. Google Scholar

17.

K. Dinter 1898: Welwitschia country. — Gard. Chron. 24: 27. Google Scholar

18.

C. J. Earle 1999: The gymnosperm database. — Published on the internet. — Retrieved 19 August 2001:  http://www.conifers.orgGoogle Scholar

19.

T. Eckardt 1971: Zweijahresbericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum Berlin-Dahlem für die Jahre 1967 und 1968. — Willdenowia 6: 371–392. Google Scholar

20.

A. W. Eichler 1887: Gnetaceae. — Pp. 116–127 in: A. Engler & K. Prantl (ed.), Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien Teil 2(1). — Leipzig. Google Scholar

21.

B. M. Eller , D. J. von Willert, E. Brinkmann & B. Raasch 1983: Ecophysiological studies on Welwitschia mirabilis in the Namib desert. — S. Afr. J. Bot. 2: 209–223. Google Scholar

22.

E. R. Farr, J. A. Leussink & F. A. Stafleu (ed.) 1979: Index nominum genericorum (plantarum) 3. — Regnum Veg. 102. Google Scholar

23.

M. Friedrich-Holzhammer & H. Roessler 1966: Welwitschiaceae. — Pp. 13: 1–2 in: H. Merxmüller (ed.), Prodromus einer Flora von Südwestafrika. — Lehre. Google Scholar

24.

K. Gielsdorf 1953: (49) Welwitschia mirabilis, ihre Anzucht und Pflege. — Gärtn.-Bot. Briefe 5: 41–42. Google Scholar

25.

K. Gielsdorf 1956: (113) Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. in Blüte. — Gärtn.-Bot. Briefe 11: 110. Google Scholar

26.

W. Giess 1969: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. fil. — Dinteria 3: 3–39. Google Scholar

27.

A. B. Graf 1963: Exotica. Pictorial cyclopedia of horticulture 3. — Rutherford. Google Scholar

28.

W. Greuter, R. K. Brummit, E. Farr, N. Kilian, P. M. Kirk & P. C. Silva (ed.) 1993: NCU-3. Names in current use for extant plant genera. — Koenigstein/Taunus. Google Scholar

29.

W. Greuter, J. McNeill, F. R. Barrie, H. M. Burdet, V. Demoulin, T. S. Filgueiras, D. H. Nicolson, P. C. Silva, P. Trehane, N. J. Turland & D. L. Hawksworth (ed.) 2000: International code of botanical nomenclature (Saint Louis Code), adopted by the Sixteenth International Botanical Congress, St Louis, Missouri, July-August 1999. — Koenigstein/Taunus. Google Scholar

30.

J. Groenland 1863: Le Welwitschia mirabilis. — Rev. Hort. 1863: 429–430. Google Scholar

31.

H. Hall 1950: Plant collecting in the Kaokoveld. — J. Bot. Soc. S. Afr. 36: 14–18. Google Scholar

32.

J. R. Henschel & M. K. Seely 2000: Long-term growth patterns of Welwitschia mirabilis, a longlived plant of the namib Desert (including a bibliography). — Pl. Ecol. 150: 7–26. Google Scholar

33.

J. R. Henschel , B. M. Eller , M. K. Seely & D. J. Willert 2000: Appendix. Bibliography Welwitschia mirabilis J. D. Hooker. — Pl. Ecol. 150: 19–26. Google Scholar

34.

H. Herre 1948: The first flowering of Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. fil. raised from seeds. — J. S. Afr. Bot. 14: 105–106. Google Scholar

35.

H. Herre 1954: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. fil. raised from seed to seed in the botanic garden of the University of Stellenbosch, C. P. — J. S. Afr. Bot. 20: 23–24. Google Scholar

36.

H. Herre 1959: Hundert Jahre Welwitschia! — Kakteen Sukk. 10: 177–180. Google Scholar

37.

H. Herre 1960: (133) Noch einmal Welwitschia (mirabilis) bainesii (Hook. f.) Carr. — Gärtn.-Bot. Briefe 15: 147–148. Google Scholar

38.

J. D. Hooker 1861: The Tumboa of West Africa. — Gard. Chron. 1861: 1007–1008. Google Scholar

39.

J. D. Hooker 1862: On Welwitschia mirablilis. — Gard. Chron. 1862: 71. Google Scholar

40.

J. D. Hooker 1863: On Welwitschia, a new genus of the Gnetaceae. — Trans. Linn. Soc. London 24: 1–48. Google Scholar

41.

W. J. Hooker 1863: Welwitschia mirabilis. — Bot. Mag. 89: t. 5368, 5369. Google Scholar

42.

F. Horwood 1974: Succulent safari to Africa 2. — Cact. Succ. J. (Los Angeles) 46: 258–265. Google Scholar

43.

Index Kewensis on CD-ROM, 1997, version 2.0. — Oxford. Google Scholar

44.

Index Seminum quae Hortus Botanicus Conimbrigensis pro mutua commutatione offert 1944, 1945, 1950, 1951. — Coimbra. Google Scholar

45.

Index Seminum quae Hortus et Musaeum Agricolum Ultramarinum pro mutua commutatione offert 1968. — Lisboa. Google Scholar

46.

IUCN/UNEP 1987: The IUCN directory of Afrotropical protected areas. — Gland & Cambridge. Google Scholar

47.

B. D. Jackson 1894–95: Index kewensis plantarum phanerogamarum. — Oxonii. Google Scholar

48.

E. Jensen 1957: Beobachtungen an Welwitschia bainesii Carr. (syn. Welwitschia mirabilis Hook.) im Namib-Hinterland von Walvis Bay in den Jahren 1953 bis 1955. — Sukkulentenkunde 6: 43–47. Google Scholar

49.

E. I. Kärnefelt 1994: Welwitsch trodde det var en häring (Welwitsch believed it was an illusion). —  Svensk Bot. Tidskr. 88: 287–298. Google Scholar

50.

M. Kedves 1987: LM and EM studies on pollen grains of recent Welwitschia mirabilis Hook, and Ephedra species. — Acta Bot. Hung. 33: 81–103. Google Scholar

51.

L. E. Kers 1967: The distribution of Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. — Svensk Bot. Tidskr. 61: 97–125. Google Scholar

52.

J. C. Knotters 1996: Welwitschia mirabilis. — Succulenta 75: 54–61. Google Scholar

53.

K. Kubitzki 1990: Welwitschiaceae. — Pp. 387–391 in: K. Kubitzki (ed.), The families and genera of vascular plants 1. — Berlin, etc. Google Scholar

54.

L. Langhammer & G. Schulze 1977: Notiz über eine gummiartige Ausscheidung auf den Blättern von Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. — Willdenowia 8: 41–48. Google Scholar

55.

B. E. Leuenberger 1980: Aus der 300jährigen Geschichte des Berliner Botanischen Gartens. Der Wiederaufbau der Sukkulentensammlung nach 1945. — Kakteen Sukk. 31: 260–264. Google Scholar

56.

B. E. Leuenberger 1981: Scientific data recording in the Botanic Garden Berlin-Dahlem. — Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 102: 1–4. Google Scholar

57.

B. E. Leuenberger 1992: Die Sukkulentensammlungen des Botanischen Gartens Berlin-Dahlem. — Kakteen Sukk. 43: 116–132. Google Scholar

58.

B. E. Leuenberger 1997: Welwitschia-annex. Published on the internet. —  Http://www.bgbm.fu-berlin.de/bgbm/garden/bereiche/areas/welwitsh.htmGoogle Scholar

59.

G. H. Leute & W. Wetschnig 1990: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. — ein botanisches Kuriosum. — Carinthia II 180/100: 5–10. Google Scholar

60.

G. P. Lombardi 2000: La Tumboa (Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. fil.) en el Perú. — Quepo 14: 75–85. Google Scholar

61.

K. Maas 1959: (126) Welwitschia (mirabilis) bainesii (Hook. f.) Carr. — Gärtn.-Bot. Briefe 15: 133–134. Google Scholar

62.

F. Markgraf 1926: Welwitschiaceae. — Pp. 419–429 in: A. Engler , (ed.) Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien, ed. 2, 13. — Leipzig. Google Scholar

63.

P. Martens 1961: Sur l'ontogenèse de la fleur male de Welwitschia mirabilis. — Phytomorphology 11: 37–40. Google Scholar

64.

P. Martens 1971: Les Gnétophytes. Handbuch der Pflanzenantomie. Spezieller Teil, ed. 2, 12. — Berlin. Google Scholar

65.

P. Martens 1977: Welwitschia mirabilis and neoteny. — Amer. J. Bot. 64: 916–920. Google Scholar

66.

G. C. Matos 1970: A vegetaçao do Parque Nacional do Iona. — Bol. Soc. Brot., ser. 2, 44: 245–247. Google Scholar

67.

F. Mattick 1956: Bericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum zu Berlin-Dahlem für die Jahre 1953 und 1954. — Willdenowia 1: 669–688. Google Scholar

68.

F. Mattick 1958: Bericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum zu Berlin-Dahlem für das Jahr 1955. — Willdenowia 2: 111–122. Google Scholar

69.

W. R. McNab 1873: On the development of the flowers of Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. — Trans. Linn. Soc. 28: 507–512. Google Scholar

70.

J. Mildbraed 1953: Bericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum zu Berlin-Dahlem in den Jahren 1951 und 1952. — Mitt. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 1: 38–58. Google Scholar

71.

C. Naudin ] 1862: Découvertes du Docteur Welwitsch en Afrique. — Rev. Hort. 1862: 185–187. Google Scholar

72.

H. H. W. Pearson 1929: Gnetales. — Cambridge. Google Scholar

73.

R. Pilger 1953a: Bericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum Berlin-Dahlem vom 1. März 1943 bis 31. März 1947. — Mitt. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 1: 1–21. Google Scholar

74.

R. Pilger 1953b: Bericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum Berlin-Dahlem, April 1947 — Dezember 1948. — Mitt. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 1: 22–31. Google Scholar

75.

R. Pilger 1953c: Bericht über den Botanischen Garten und das Botanische Museum Berlin-Dahlem, 1949–1950. — Mitt. Bot. Gart. Berlin-Dahlem 1: 32–37. Google Scholar

76.

L. Pratorius (undated): Vascular plant image gallery. Images of the Welwitschiaceae; male cones, close. — Published on the internet. — Retrieved 31 August 2000:  http://www.csdl.tamu.edu/flora/hdwimages1/hdwo079709b.jpgGoogle Scholar

77.

R. J. Rodin 1953a: The distribution of Welwitschia mirabilis. — Amer. J. Bot. 40: 280–285. Google Scholar

78.

R. J. Rodin 1953b: Seedling morphology of Welwitschia. — Amer. J. Bot. 40: 371–378. Google Scholar

79.

R. J. Rodin 1963: Anatomy of the reproductive bracts in Welwitschia. — Amer. J. Bot. 50: 641–648. Google Scholar

80.

Royal Botanic Gardens Kew 2000: Kew record of taxonomic literature. — Published on the internet. — Retrieved 25 September 2000:  http//www.rbgkew.org.uk/kr/krhomeext.htmlGoogle Scholar

81.

A. F. W. Schimper 1898: Pflanzen-Geographie auf physiologischer Grundlage. — Jena. Google Scholar

82.

L. Schmidt 1997: Die Botanischen Gärten in Deutschland. — Hamburg. Google Scholar

83.

D. Schnabel 2000a: Die wundervolle Welwitschia aus der Namib-Wüste. — Kakteen Sukk. 51: 29–36. Google Scholar

84.

D. Schnabel 2000b: Welwitschia mirabilis als Zimmerpflanze. — Kakteen Sukk. 51: 65–67. Google Scholar

85.

T. Schöpke (undated): Vascular plant image gallery. Native, from Namib Desert (male). — Published on the internet. — Retrieved 31 August 2000:  http://csdl.tamu.edu/flora/schoepke/wel_mi_6.jpgGoogle Scholar

86.

J. Schultze-Motel 1992: Abteilung Nacktsamer, Gymnospermae. — Pp. 252–373 in: Urania Pflanzenreich 2. — Leipzig, etc. Google Scholar

87.

E. D. Schulze & I. Schulze 1976: Distribution and control of photosynthetic pathways in plants growing in the Namib Desert, with special regards to Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. fil. — Madoqua 9: 5–13. Google Scholar

88.

L. C. Song 1980: Gross morphology of developing male and female strobili of Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f., 1–2. — Cact. Succ. J. (Los Angeles) 52: 30–32, 68–73. Google Scholar

89.

E. M. A. Steyn & G. F. Smith 1999: Welwitschiaceae. — Species Plantarum, Flora of the World 3: 1–8. — Canberra. Google Scholar

90.

M. G. Sykes 1910: The anatomy of Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. in the seedling and adult states. — Trans. Linn. Soc. London, Bot. 7: 327–354. Google Scholar

91.

H. Takeda 1913: Morphology of the bracts in Welwitschia mirabilis. — Ann. Bot. (Oxford) 27: 547–552. Google Scholar

92.

W. J. Tijmens 1978: A botanical octopus: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. — Aloe 16: 11–18. Google Scholar

93.

W. Triebner 1938: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. — Cactus J. (Croydon) 6: 61–62. Google Scholar

94.

E. J. Van Jaarsveld 1990: The cultivation and care of Welwitschia mirabilis, the extraordinary caudiciform from the Namib desert. — Aloe 27: 69–82. Google Scholar

95.

E. J. Van Jaarsveld 1992: Welwitschia mirabilis in cultivation at Kirstenbosch. — Veld & Flora 78: 118–120. Google Scholar

96.

E. J. Van Jaarsveld 1998: Welwitschia mirabilis. — Cactus & Co. 2(4): 33–36. Google Scholar

97.

E. J. Van Jaarsveld 2000: Welwitschia mirabilis. — Veld & Flora 86(4): 176–179. Google Scholar

98.

E. J. Van Jaarsveld & C. Linder Smith 2001: Welwitschia mirabilis. — Flow. Pl. Afr. 57: 2–8. Google Scholar

99.

I. C. Verdoorn 1966: Welwitschiaceae. — Pp. 48–51 in: L. E. Codd, B. de Winter & H. B. Rycroft (ed.), Flora of Southern Africa 1. — Pretoria. Google Scholar

100.

H. Walter & S. Breckle 1984: Ökologie der Erde 2. Spezielle Ökologie der tropischen und Subtropischen Zonen. — Stuttgart. Google Scholar

101.

H. Walter 1991: Ökologie der Erde 2. Spezielle Ökologie der tropischen und Subtropischen Zonen, ed. 2. — Stuttgart. Google Scholar

102.

K. S. Walters & H. J. Gillett (ed.) 1998: 1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants. — Gland & Cambridge. Google Scholar

103.

W. Wetschnig 1997: Zur Blütenbiologie von Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. f. — Carinthia II 187/107: 159–168. Google Scholar

104.

J. A. Whellan 1965: The habitat of Welwitschia bainesii (Hook, f.) Carr. — Kirkia 5: 33–35. Google Scholar

105.

F. Widder 1960: Zur Erinnerung an die Entdeckung der Welwitschia vor hundert Jahren. — Ber. Deutsch. Bot. Ges. 73: 50–57. Google Scholar

106.

H. Wilhelmi & W. Barthlott 1997: Mikromorphologie der Epicuticularwachse und die Systematik der Gymnospermen. — Trop.-Subtrop. Pflanzenwelt 96. Google Scholar

107.

D. J. von Willert 1985: Welwitschia mirabilis — new aspects in the biology of an old plant. — Advances Bot. Res. 11: 157–191. Google Scholar

108.

D. J. von Willert 1993: Can Welwitschia mirabilis have more than only two foliage leaves? — S. Afr. J. Bot. 59: 639–640. Google Scholar

109.

D. J. von Willert 1994: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. fil. — das Überlebenswunder der Namibwüste. — Naturwiss. 81: 430–442. Google Scholar

110.

D. J. von Willert 2000: Welwitschia mirabilis. — Published on the internet. — Retrieved 29 August 2000:  http://www.un-muenster.de/biologie/pflanzenoekologie/science/willert/vw_welwmira.htmGoogle Scholar

111.

Zecher , 1974: Welwitschia mirabilis Hook. — Kakteen Sukk. 25: 174–175. Google Scholar
Beat Ernst Leuenberger "Welwitschia mirabilis (Welwitschiaceae), male cone characters and a new subspecies," Willdenowia 31(2), 357-381, (2 September 2001). https://doi.org/10.3372/wi.31.31206
Published: 2 September 2001
JOURNAL ARTICLE
25 PAGES


SHARE
ARTICLE IMPACT
Back to Top