Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 125, Issue 1, pp 29-46

First online:

Systematics and phylogeny of theCompositae (Asteraceae)

  • Gerhard WagenitzAffiliated withLehrstuhl für Pflanzensystematik, Systematisch-Geobotanisches Institut

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Compositae (Asteraceae) are remarkably homogenous in basic type of inflorescence, flower and fruit. TheCichorioideae are more closely related to the other groups than usually realized. The classical concept of theAsteroideae tribes has been confirmed in general, but recent investigations (using palynology, carpology, phytochemistry etc.) suggest numerous corrections, and some genera (e.g.Liabum, Echinops, Tarchonanthus, Arnica) do not fit into the scheme. The tribes ofAsteroideae may be divided into two groups characterized by several common characters and common tendencies. The oldest reliable fossils are known from the borderline Oligocene/Miocene. Looking for the nearest relatives,Campanulales (incl.Calyceraceae) and—because of interesting phytochemical agreements—Araliales have to be discussed.

Key words

Compositae (Asteraceae) Liabum Echinops Tarchonanthus Arnica Pollen-morphology excretion-organs phytochemistry