Taxonomic and ecological implications of leaf cuticular morphology in Castanopsis, Castanea, and Chrysolepis

Original Article


Leaves of 41 species of Castanopsis, six species of Castanea, and Chrysolepischrysophyllum Hjelmq. were examined. In Castanopsis, all species possessed cyclocytic stomata with thickened subsidiary cells; thin-walled peltate trichomes are the most frequent type on the abaxial surface of the leaves of this genus. In Castanea, stomata are transitional between cyclocytic and anomocytic; thin-walled peltate trichomes were recorded for the first time on the abaxial surface of Castanea leaves. In Chrysolepis, cyclocytic stomata with non-thickened subsidiary cells and thick-walled peltate trichomes were observed. The thickened subsidiary cells support the placement of the “fissa-group” in Castanopsis. The results of this study support the idea that Castanopsis and Castanea are sister groups. Thick-walled peltate trichomes were only recorded in Chrysolepis, thus supporting its taxonomic separation from Castanopsis. The phylogenetic distribution of trichome types among genera of Fagaceae is summarized. The evolutionary trends of trichome types in Castanopsis are discussed, as are the implications of stomatal and trichome features on fossil identification and ecology.


Fagaceae Leaf anatomy Taxonomy Palaeobotany Ecology 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Biodiversity and Biogeography, Kunming Institute of BotanyChinese Academy of SciencesKunmingChina
  2. 2.Graduate School of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.School of Ecological Technology and EngineeringShanghai Institute of TechnologyShanghaiChina

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