Anales del Jardín Botánico de Madrid, Vol 71, No 2 (2014)

Taxonomical identity of Sarcocornia fruticosa and S. hispanica in the Iberian Peninsula


https://doi.org/10.3989/ajbm.2338

Ana Guilló
Instituto de la Biodiversidad-CIBIO. Universidad de Alicante, Spain

M. Ángeles Alonso
Instituto de la Biodiversidad-CIBIO. Universidad de Alicante, Spain

M. Lucía Lendínez
Dpto. Biología Animal, Biología Vegetal y Ecología. Universidad de Jaén, Spain

Carlos Salazar
Dpto. Biología Animal, Biología Vegetal y Ecología. Universidad de Jaén, Spain

Ana Juan
Instituto de la Biodiversidad-CIBIO. Universidad de Alicante, Spain

Abstract


The recent description of Sarcocornia hispanica, from SE Iberian Peninsula evidences the notable morphological complexity of this genus. This species is quite close to S. fruticosa, as they both show an erect habit and lack of rooting stems. Besides, S. fruticosa has been traditionally recorded for the same geographical area of S. hispanica. However, the original description of S. hispanica did not include any mention about these two taxa would live together and which ones are the differential morphological characters. Our study aims to clarify their main morphological differences and to address two questions. Firstly, if two close species would be coexisting or secondly, if both species would not live together and then only one erect shrubby species should be recognised for the southeastern peninsular. Therefore, a detailed morphological study of these two species was carried out using vegetative and reproductive characters together with SEM features. Based on the original description, the main morphological features of S. hispanica were compared, plus other features which would support their identification. Our data pointed out the existence of a marked overlapping for most of the studied characters independently of the geographical procedence of the samples. As a result, no significant morphological differences have been found between both taxa, and S. hispanica is proposed as a mere synonym of S. fruticosa.

Keywords


Morphological study; chromosome number; SEM; Spain; Portugal

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