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Abstract Detail

Systematics Section/ASPT

Zuluaga-Trochez, Alejandro [1], Cameron, Kenneth [2], Barron, Makenzie [2].

Morpho-anatomical characters of flowers and fruits of Monstera (Araceae), and their utility in systematics.

The genus Monstera (Araceae) is a very important hemiepiphytic component of montane and lowland tropical rainforests. It is exclusively Neotropical, and has two principal centers of diversity: Costa Rica-Panama and the Colombian Andes. In a monographic revision in 1977 only 22 species were recognized, but there are now 41 accepted names, and as many as 10-15 new species waiting to be described or published. Based on characters of the heteroblastic development four sections were proposed, changing considerably previous classifications. However, correct identification of species in this genus is challenging, due to the confusing taxonomy, large number of existing names, incorrect use of some them, and deficient collections due to the large size of the plants (i.e. a single leaf can be 1 m long). Consequently, a detailed morphological study of Monstera is underway, and this is being generated together with a phylogenetic analysis for Monstera, and the subfamily Monsteroideae based on chloroplast and nuclear regions. So far, our analyses do not support completely the sectional classification, and there are not consistent traits to identify clades within Monstera. We explored several morphological and anatomical characters of flowers and fruits in Monstera species representing the four sections. Micro and macromorphological traits were studied on herbarium specimens and spirit collections using dissecting and electron microscope. In general, micromorphological characters showed low variation, while macromorphological characters such as size and shape of the flowers, number of flowers per inflorescence, and length of the style were significantly different among the studied species. These traits seem to be constant within species having potential for species identification. On the other hand, anatomical characters like the distribution of trichosclereids inside the flower showed interesting patterns. For instance, Mexican and Central American -which are the earlier divergent species in our phylogeny- have considerably more trichosclereids in comparison with the South American species. Future analyses will study the evolution of these traits in a phylogenetic framework.

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1 - University of Wisconsin-Madison, 430 Lincoln Drive, UWisconsin-Department Of Botany, Madison, WI, 53706, USA
2 - University of Wisconsin, Department of Botany, 154 Birge Hall, 450 Lincoln Drive, Madison, WI, 53706, USA


Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Grand Salon A - D/Riverside Hilton
Date: Monday, July 29th, 2013
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PSY058
Abstract ID:780
Candidate for Awards:None

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