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Abstract Detail

Systematics Section / ASPT

Wilson, C. [1].

Resolving relationships among the polyphyletic Iris section Limniris species.

Iris (Iridaceae) has about 260 geophytic, herbaceous, perennial species with colorful perianth whorls, nectary guides and unifacial, distichous leaves that form a basal rosette. A distinct morphology and molecular studies support Iris as monophyletic but molecular data resolves several infrageneric groups as polyphyletic, including section Limniris, the subject of this report. Section Limniris, a group recognized since Dykes 1913 study, is characterized by rhizomes and sepals that lack beards and crests (ancestral characters for the genus). Limniris has 16 series that occur throughout the range of the genus, Asia, North America and Europe, with one species extending into northern Africa. While Iris are mostly plants of desert, semi-desert or rocky montane habitats, species from section Limniris often occur in mesic or wetland environments. I explored relationships among 64 taxa representing 59 of the approximately 73 Limniris species using trnL-F, matK, trnK and ITS sequence data. This research confirmed that Limniris is polyphyletic with at least six origins. About 60% of Limniris species were resolved within a single monophyletic clade comprised of species from series Californicae, Sibericae, Tripetalae, Laevigatae, Prismaticae, Vernae, Ensatae, Ruthenicae and Hexagonae. The remaining five Limniris clades were relatively small and comprised of species from one or two series. These clades were sister or basal to species from other subgenera or sections, including bulbous Iris that are recognized at the generic level in some classifications. The series Tripetalae, Sibiricae, Laevigatae, Foetidissimae and Spuriae were para- or polyphyletic. Informal groups are suggested although studies to determine morphological synapomorphies are not yet completed.

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Related Links:
Iris research website

1 - Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, 1500 N. College, Claremont, California, 91711, USA


Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: CP16
Location: Stevens 3/Hilton
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2007
Time: 2:00 PM
Number: CP16005
Abstract ID:1832

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