Arum cylindraceum subsp. pitsyllianum (Araceae), a New Taxon from Cyprus

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2011
Authors:Hadjikyriakou, G., Hand, R., Mansion G.
Journal:Novon; a Journal for Botanical Nomenclature. St. Louis, MO
Start Page:431
Keywords:Araceae, Arum, Cyprus, IUCN Red List

Arum cylindraceum Gasp. subsp. pitsyllianum Hadjik., Hand & G. Mans. (Araceae), a rare Cypriot endemic, is described as new. This diploid taxon differs from A. cylindraceum s. str. by the spathe tube that is whitish to greenish white internally with a pale purple horizontal strip just above the base and 3–4 cm long, the spadix, which is orange to orangish purple, and the anthers and connectives that are orange.

Full Text

According to Boyce (1993, 2006), the genus Arum L. consists of 28 species, occurring from the Azores, North Africa, Europe, and eastward to China. Arum megobrebi Lobin, M. Neumann, Bogner & P. C. Boyce, an additional taxon, has been described recently (Lobin et al., 2007). The genus is represented in Cyprus by six species placed in various infragenera (cf. Boyce, 1993, 1994, 2006) and includes A. italicum Mill., A. concinnatum Schott (section Arum), A. sintenisii (Engl.) P. C. Boyce (section Dioscoridea P. C. Boyce subsection Dischroochiton Schott), A. rupicola Boiss. (section Dioscoridea subsection Tenuifila (Engl.) P. C. Boyce), A. hygrophilum Boiss. (section Dioscoridea subsection Hygrophila P. C. Boyce), and A. dioscoridis Sm. (section Dioscoridea subsection Poeciloporphyochiton Schott). Both the new subspecies and A. cylindraceum Gasp. would assign to Arum sect. Dioscoridea subsect. Alpina P. C. Boyce. Recent molecular phylogenies of the genus are partially congruent with the morphological classification (Mansion et al., 2008; Espíndola et al., 2010; Linz et al., 2010), which suggests extreme caution when proposing a new classification without identifying nonmolecular synapomorphies.
In 1996, Arum specimens were collected by the first author from Madari Peak in Cyprus, and the same taxon was later found in the vicinity of Lagoudera village. Although it exhibited characters of A. cylindraceum, the Cypriot plants differed in several details. Correspondence and two photographs of the plant (one showing the open spathe with spadix, and one showing the leaf blade) were sent to Peter Boyce (pers. comm., 2004), who confirmed the determination and stated: ‘‘This is a new record for Cyprus (indeed a new record so far east in the Mediterranean)—the nearest population in the Mediterranean is Crete, although there are isolated populations in continental West Turkey.’’ Since then, new populations have been found in Cyprus and afford a broader view.
So far, the taxonomy of Arum cylindraceum does not appear to be fully clarified. This is suggested by the fact that the two taxa A. cylindraceum (earlier treated under the synonym A. alpinum Schott & Kotschy) and A. lucanum Cavara & Grande, first accepted by Boyce (1993), were later classified together (Boyce, 2006). As regards the latter taxon, Boyce (2006: 134) stated that ‘‘without a shadow of doubt. . .it too is referable to the prioritized A. cylindraceum.’’ This is somewhat surprising, for the two taxa were originally placed in two different subsections, with A. lucanum assigned to subsection Dischroochiton Schott and A. cylindraceum (= A. alpinum) to subsection Alpina. The synonymy of these names is currently generally accepted (see Bedalov & Küpfer, 2005, for taxonomic concepts), but a recent molecular study by Linz et al. (2010: 413) found that the two taxa ‘‘did not form a group.’’ The study by Esp´ındola et al. (2010: 27) indicated that even A. cylindraceum s. str., as a taxon that excluded lucanum, may be paraphyletic. They recommend that ‘‘future taxonomic revisions should carefully consider characters not related to pollination’’ because of probable convergent evolution.

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