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Noben, Sarah; Kessler, Michael; Weigand, Anna; Tejedor, Adrian; Duque, Wilson D. Rodriguez; Giraldo Gallego, Luis Fernando and Lehnert, Marcus (2018): Taxonomic and Biogeographic Reappraisal of the Genus Dicksonia (Dicksoniaceae) in the Neotropics. In: Systematic Botany, Vol. 43, No. 4: pp. 839-857

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We evaluate morphological characters of South American Dicksonia (Dicksoniaceae) gathered from field observations and herbarium specimens. We here adopt the taxonomic concept of earlier authors and separate D. sellowiana of southeastern Brazil from D. navarrensis (=D. gigantea auct.) and D. karsteniana, which occur mainly in Mesoamerica and in the Andes, respectively. The latter species is especially variable in plant size and persistence of the hairy indument, which can be correlated with local ecological conditions. For plants with small, hairy fronds from shrubby paramo vegetation, we here propose to reinstate a varietal name, D. karsteniana var. arachnoidea, and for glabrescent plants regularly found at lower elevations in closed forest we suggest D. karsteniana var. spruceana. Dicksonia stuebelii is maintained as a separate species and is reported from northern Colombia for the first time. One species is recognized as new, D. lehnertiana;it is characterized by relatively small, long-stalked fronds with spreading bristly hairs. Results of an S-DIVA biogeographical analysis implemented on an updated phylogeny of Neotropical Dicksonia separate D. sellowiana in southeastern Brazil clearly from the rest of the taxa, whose ancestral area is reconstructed as northern Andes-southern Mesoamerica. However, the resolution and support in this group could be improved. Our results have significance for conservation efforts, as D. sellowiana is now virtually a Brazilian endemic.

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