Wood and bark anatomy of Muntingiaceae: A phylogenetic comparison within Malvales s. l.
Quantitative and qualitative data on wood and bark anatomy are given for Muntingia calabura L. and Dicraspidia donnell-smithii Standley. These data are compared with phylogenetic schemes, based on DNA analysis, in which Muntingiaceae belong to the “dipterocarp clade” within Malvales. The data are consistent with this hypothesis, although Muntingiaceae lack pit vestures in vessels, which are seen in the other malvalean families (Cistaceae, Dipterocarpaceae, Neuradaceae, Sarcolaenaceae, Thymeleaceae), and this may represent a loss of pit vestures. All families of the dipterocarp clade agree with both genera of Muntingiaceae in having tracheids as the imperforate tracheary element type (at least ancestrally), although fiber-tracheids also occur in some Dipterocarpaceae and Thymeleaceae. The large size of some malvalean families (with attendant greater diversity in character states) and a paucity of wood studies in those families make for difficulty in comparison of features such as axial parenchyma and ray types with those of Muntingiaceae; character states of these features are consistent with placement of Muntingiaceae in the dipterocarp clade of Malvales. Banded phloem fibers in bark of Muntingiaceae are much like those of other Malvales. Wood of Muntingiaceae is highly mesomorphic according to quantitative vessel features.
Key Wordsbark anatomy Cistaceae Dipterocarpaceae Elaeocarpaceae Malvales Thymeleaceae tracheids vessel grouping vestured pits
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