, Volume 41, Issue 1, pp 1-13

Some new plant finds from the Posongchong Formation of Yunnan, and consideration of a phytogeographic similarity between South China and Australia during the Early Devonian

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Abstract

The new plants documented here, including a representative of the trimerophytesPsilophyton primitiuum sp. nov., a questionable rhyniophyte or trimerophyteHedeia sinica sp. nov., a prelycopodBragwanathia sp. and two species of zosterophyllophytes,Zosterophyllum australianum Lang and Cookson 1930 and2. sp. 1, from the Posongchong Formation of southeastern Yunnan, China, add to the known floral diversity of the Early Devonian of this region. Two sections of the Posongchong Formation, Changputang section of Wenshan district and Gegu section of Mengzi district also are introduced. After comparing the plants with those of the coeval flora of Australia and considering the data of recent paleocontinental reconstructions, the authors suggest that there is a northeastern Gondwana phytogeographic unit during the early Devonian comprising Australia, South China Block and perhaps Shan-Thai Block. The similarity of the floral component between Australia and South China is discussed. Because both Australia and South China also have dominant or endemic taxa, each might be recognized as a subunit, separately characterized byHedeia for Australia andEophyllophyton for South China.

Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 49372075 and 49742004)