Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 301, Issue 8, pp 2025–2042 | Cite as

Morphological analysis of the Silene gigantea complex (Caryophyllaceae) across the Balkan Peninsula, south-western Turkey and Cyprus

  • Pierre-Emmanuel Du Pasquier
  • Yamama Naciri
  • Daniel Jeanmonod
Original Article


We investigated the morphology of the Silene gigantea complex across its distribution range in the Balkan Peninsula, south-western Turkey and Cyprus. We performed a factorial analysis for mixed quantitative and qualitative variables followed by k-means analyses to determine the most probable morphological clustering within the species. A linear discriminant analysis was then computed using the DISQUAL method to test the a priori classification. The results indicate that three entities, which are consistent with the previously published taxonomic treatment, can be recognised. Moreover, our results show that the distribution of S. gigantea subsp. hellenica can be extended to Turkey, and that S. gigantea subsp. rhodopea is actually absent from this country, in contradiction to previous assessments. The global distribution of the S. gigantea complex is established and the morphological characteristics of each subspecies are discussed.


Eastern Mediterranean Basin DISQUAL LDA Mixed data Multivariate analyses Taxonomy 



We wish to thank André Schlüssel, Aurélie Cusin, Camille Christe, Manuela Esmerode and Laurence Fazan for their help with field work in Greece. We express our warm thanks to Jacques Zaffran for his welcome on Kriti and allowing us access to his herbarium as well as Kemal Yıldız for the loan of specimens and for his help in drafting a collection permit request. We are also indebted to the curators of AIX, ATH, ATHU, BEI, BP, MAIC, MJSD, P, PAL, SO, W, and Z herbaria who hosted us or sent us specimens or photos. We wish to thank the two anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments and Dr Michelle Price for having edited the manuscript. Finally, we are especially grateful to the Greek Ministry of Environment Energy and Climatic Change who provided the necessary collecting authorisations. The field trips were supported by the Société de Physique et d’Histoire Naturelle (Augustin Lombard travel fund) and the Société Académique de Genève (travel fund).

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pierre-Emmanuel Du Pasquier
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yamama Naciri
    • 1
    • 2
  • Daniel Jeanmonod
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Unité de Phylogénie et Génétique MoléculairesConservatoire et Jardin botaniquesChambésy, GenevaSwitzerland
  2. 2.Laboratoire de Systématique Végétale et BiodiversitéUniversity of GenevaChambésy, GenevaSwitzerland

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