Morphology, evolution and taxonomy of <i>Wachendorfia</i> (Haemodoraceae)

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1992

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Bothalia

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Abstract
Wachendorfia Burm. is a small genus endemic to the Cape Floral Region. Pour species are recognised in this study. Two species were originally described by Burman in 1757 and these were followed by numerous other descriptions of what is essentially one very variable species  (W. paniculaia Burm.). This variation is discussed and reasons are given as to why the recognition of formal infraspecific taxa is inappropriate. Formal taxonomic descriptions, distribution maps and a key to the species are provided. Rhizome morphology, leaf anatomy and pollen and seed coat structures were investigated and illustrations are provided. A cladogram was inferred and this is consistent with an ecological speciation model for the genus. The two species with the most restricted distribution (W. brachyandra W.F. Barker and W. pamfiora W.F. Barker) are considered to be the most recently evolved. Features of systematic and ecological interest (e.g. floral enantiomorphy) are discussed.
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