Economic Botany

, Volume 42, Issue 4, pp 478–494 | Cite as

Quinua biosystematics II: Free-living populations

  • Hugh D. Wilson


South AmericanChenopodium assignable to sect.Chenopodium subsect.Cellulata (Chenopodiaceae) have been classified on the basis of fruit and leaf blade morphology. Samples representing 99 free-living and domesticated populations were included in a comparative study based on electrophoretic and morphometric data. The resulting patterns of variation indicate that past reliance on the fruit for diagnostic characters has obscured biological relationships. Domesticated and free-living populations of the high Andes, distributed from northwestern Argentina to Colombia, are closely allied and clearly separate from domesticated populations of coastal Chile and free-living populations of Argentina. Circumscription of the ArgentineC. hircinum to include Andean populations is rejected. Specific differentiation among Andean populations, polyphyletic origins forC. quinoa, and the presence of different ploidy levels are not indicated. Free-living Andean types sympatric withC. quinoa are provisionally placed within that species as subsp. milleanum. While the coastal quingua domesticate is clearly distinct from the Andean weed/crop complex, it is provisionally placed within subsp.quinoa to conserve established nomenclature. The overall pattern of morphogenetic variation among South American populations suggests a co-evolutionary relationship between domesticated and free-living populations of the high Andes, with a center of diversity at the southern extreme of the Andean range. Populations ofC. hircinum represent a logical link to the progenitor of the quinua complex, although firm phyletic and systematic alignments will require more information concerning populations of south-central Chile, and further definition of relative affinities among North and South American elements of subsectionCellulata.


La biosistemática de la quinua II: Poblaciones indomesticadas. Las especies deChenopodium sudamericanas asignadas a la secciónChenopodium subsecciónCellulata se han clasificado en base a la morfolgía del fruto y de la hoja. Se hizo un estudio comparativo que incluyó 99 poblaciones de indomesticadas y domesticadas utilizando datos morfométricos y electroforéticos. Los patrones de variación resultantes indican que el uso de las características del fruto como diagnóstico ha oscurecido las relaciones biológicas existentes. Las poblaciones provenientes de los altos Andes entre el noroeste Argentino y Colombia son muy relacionados y claramente separados de las poblaciones domesticadas de Chile y las indomesticadas de Argentina. Se descarta la inclusión de las poblaciones andinas dentro de la especie argentinaC. hircinum. No se encuentra la evidencia para diferenciación específica dentro de las poblaciones andinas; para el origen polifilético deC. quinoa, y para la presencia de diferentes niveles deploidia. Los tipos andinos indomesticados simpatricos conC. quinoa se ubican provisionalmente en la subespeciemilleanum. Aunque la quingua costeña domesticada es claramente diferente del complejo andino maleza/cultivo se ubica provisionalmente en la subespecie quinoa para conservar la nomenclatura establecida. El patrón general de distribución morfogenética entre las poblaciones sudamericanas sugiere una relación coevolutiva entre poblaciones domesticadas y las indomesticadas de los Andes altos con un centro de diversidad en el extremo sur de la distribución en los Andes. Las poblaciones deC. hircinum representan una unión lógica al progenitos del complejo quinua aunque se necesitan mayor información sobre las poblaciones del centro-sur de Chile para tener evidencia filogenética y sistemática más firme. También es necesaria una definición de las afinidades relativas entre los elementos de Norte y Suramérica en la subsecciónCellulata.


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Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hugh D. Wilson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyTexas A&M University

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