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Taxonomic studies in the Miconieae (Melastomataceae): XV. Revision of Miconia sect. Menendezia

Abstract

A new section, Miconia sect. Menendezia, is recognized, characterized, and assessed phylogenetically. The section includes three species: M. angustifolia, M. biflora, and M. urbanii. All three have fruits with constricted hypanthia, and traditionally were included within an extremely non-monophyletic Tetrazygia. The monophyly of the section is supported by molecular analyses and morphology (i.e., calyx teeth flattened parallel to the associated lobe and equaling to much longer than the calyx lobes, and possibly also hypanthium constricted and calyx tube regularly tearing between the lobes). In addition, the inflorescence branches are flattened, although this condition is only poorly developed in M. angustifolia. Miconia urbanii (incl. M. stahlii) and M. biflora are morphologically distinctive (i.e., as evidenced by their strongly flattened inflorescence axes, flowers with an elongate hypanthium and calyx lobes, large petals that are undulate on one side, and fully inferior, slightly to strongly 4-lobed ovary) and these characters are likely synapomorphic for the putative M. urbanii + M. biflora clade, which was recognized as the genus Menendezia by N. L. Britton. Species descriptions, nomenclatural information, specimen citations, and eco-geographical characterization for each of the three species are presented, along with an identification key. Section Menendezia is well supported as a subclade within the Caribbean clade of Miconia, a morphologically heterogeneous clade of ca. 160 species (out of a total of some 1900 species in the genus). Finally, the names Calycogonium biflorum, Tetrazygia angustifolia, T. stahlii, and T. urbanii are lectotypified.

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Acknowledgments

We thank Kent Perkins, former Collections Manager, and Alan Franck, current Collections Manager, of the University of Florida Herbarium (FLAS; in the Florida Museum of Natural History) for their assistance in processing specimens. We also thank the curators and staff of the herbaria (A, F, GH, MICH, MO, MSC, NY, and US) who generously provided specimens on loan. Numerous individuals helped in fieldwork. We are grateful to Fabian Michelangeli for allowing use of his beautiful photos of Miconia angustifolia, and to Frank Almeda and Eldis Bécquer for their helpful comments on an earlier version of this article.

Funding

This research was supported, in part, by National Science Foundation Grant BSR-0818399.

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Correspondence to Walter S. Judd.

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Judd, W.S., Majure, L.C. Taxonomic studies in the Miconieae (Melastomataceae): XV. Revision of Miconia sect. Menendezia. Brittonia 74, 297–310 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12228-022-09708-w

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12228-022-09708-w

Keywords

  • Lesser Antilles
  • Miconieae
  • Miconia sect. Menendezia
  • Puerto Rico
  • Tetrazygia