The Dryopteris varia complex (subg. Erythrovariae sect. Variae Fraser-Jenk.) is an apogamous fern complex. Most species of the complex are triploid apogamous, show morphological and genetic variation, and present difficulties in their identification. Recent molecular research suggested that the reason that each apogamous species in the complex is so variable is due to reticulate evolution through hybridization between diploid sexual and triploid apogamous species. In this study, we summarized the taxonomic treatment of 11 species within the D. varia complex (D. bissetiana, D. chichisimensis, D. erythrovaria sp. nov., D. hikonensis, D. insularis, D. kobayashii, D. protobissetiana, D. sacrosancta, D. saxifraga, D. subhikonensis sp. nov., and D. varia) on the basis of their genome constituents revealed by molecular analyses.
Interspecific hybridization between the endangered herb Artemisia gilvescens and its common congener A. indica var. maximowiczii (Asteraceae) was analyzed using morphometrics and molecular genetic markers [ycf6–psbM spacer in cpDNA and the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region in nrDNA]. Ninety eight plants from Naruto, Japan, were used to determine morphological and genetic variations. PCRRFLP analysis of the ITS regions revealed that 35, 34, and 29 individuals were A. gilvescens, A. indica var. maximowiczii, and their hybrid, respectively. Based on a principal component analysis of six leaf characters, A. gilvescens and A. indica var. maximowiczii were clearly separated into two clusters. Although many hybrid individuals were plotted in the space between the clusters of A. gilvescens and A. indica var. maximowiczii, seven and three individuals plotted as A. gilvescens and A. indica var. maximowiczii, respectively. We detected both A. gilvescens and A. indica var. maximowiczii haplotypes in the putative hybrid individuals in the cpDNA variation analyses, indicating that an F1 hybrid was formed in crosses in both directions. The percentage of stainable pollen grains (79.2 ± 22.4%) in the putative F1 hybrids was comparable to results in the parental species (80.1 ± 10.9% in A. gilvescens and 89.1 ± 12.7% in A. indica var. maximowiczii), suggesting that ongoing extensive introgression might be an extinction risk for A. gilvescens. Ex situ conservation in a botanical garden is highly encouraged to preserve the endangered A. gilvescens.
A new species, Cerasus kumanoensis T. Katsuki (Rosaceae), sp. nov., is described from the southern Kii Peninsula, Japan. It is similar to C. jamasakura var. jamasakura and C. leveilleana because the corymbose inflorescences and extended peduncle are identical in these three taxa. However, C. kumanoensis is distinguished by several morphological and phenological characteristics, an earlier flowering period, narrowly ovate and smaller leaf blade (4–8 cm long, 1.8–3.6 cm wide) and glabrous petiole and pedicel.
Cytological observations of the mitotic chromosomes of Dryopteris tenuicula and D. tsoongii in China revealed them to be diploid (2n = 82) sexual cytotypes. Additionally, sexual D. indusiata and D. labordei were also discovered and were estimated to be diploid through ploidy analysis.
The discovery of a new locality of the mycoheterotrophic Gastrodia spathulata (Orchidaceae) in West Java, Indonesia, during herbarium studies in BO is reported. This species was previously considered an endemic species in Mt. Kinabalu, Sabah, Borneo.
A new locality of Lecanorchis taiwaniana from Nam Ha National Protected Area, Luang Namtha Province, northern Laos is reported and a description of the species based on the Laos material is provided. Lecanorchis taiwaniana was known previously only from Japan and Taiwan. Considering that species of Lecanorchis are easily overlooked in the wild due to their short flowering season and dwarf habit, it is possible that L. taiwaniana is more widely distributed.