TITLE OF RESEARCH: A taxonomical study of Andean scirpoids (Cyperaceae)
start on 01/11/1999_____end on 01/11/2005
Research done at:
Universiteit Gent (RUG)
= Université de Gand (RUG)
= Ghent University (RUG)
= Universität Gent (RUG)
Department of Biology
Phone: +32-(0)9-264.50.56 ---------- Fax: +32-(0)9-264.53.34
Official language: Dutch
more information on this research:
From the Andes a number of small Cyperaceae are known which all look very similar. They grow in a open vegetation, called páramo, situated above the montane forest and below the permanent snowline and concentrated in the northwest corner of South America. Another part of the involved taxa grows in the Andean regions of Bolivia, Chile and Argentina.
All the species are characterized by one terminal spikelet or a group of closely clustered spikelets. Because clear diagnostic features are missing the species were put into the heterogeneous genus Scirpus sensu latissimo. All those species however belong to several other genera, including one new genus.
To reveal the natural relationships of the species a morphological, anatomical and molecular analysis will be performed. The study material is composed of specimens from many herbaria and specimens which will be collected in Ecuador during this study.
Based on the first data of the morphological and anatomical studies the presence of clear differences between the examined Scirpus species indicates that the genus can be split up into several genera including Andinoscirpus (undescribed genus), Oreobolopsis, Trichophorum and Phylloscirpus. Within the genus Oreobolopsis the presence of a second species became evident (Dhooge & Goetghebeur, submitted). The habit of this new species is very similar to Trichophorum rigidum. However, this species is distinct from a typical Trichophorum due to the presence of scale-like perianth segments, the most striking feature of Oreobolopsis.
In the near future molecular sequences of a few genes will be determined to understand the phylogenetic position of the genera within the Cyperaceae.