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Salmaki, Yasaman; Heubl, Guenther and Weigend, Maximilian (2019): Towards a new classification of tribe Stachydeae (Lamiaceae): naming clades using molecular evidence. In: Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, Vol. 190, No. 4: pp. 345-358

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Stachydeae, comprising c. 470 species, are one of the most diverse and taxonomically puzzling groups in Lamioideae. In the present study, the phylogenetic relationships in the Eurystachys clade (a phylogenetic name for all genera attributed to Stachydeae except Melittis) were reconstructed utilizing nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences (nrETS, 5S-NTS) from 148 accessions in 12 genera. Our phylogenetic results recovered Stachys as paraphyletic with numerous traditionally recognized genera nested in it. A broadly defined Eurystachys clade, however, was monophyletic. Unlike previous studies, the present study was able to resolve the group into 12 well-supported clades, named here as (1) Eriostomum, (2) Stachys, (3) Prasium, (4) Setifolia, (5) Distantes, (6) Burgsdorfia, (7) Hesiodia, (8) Empedoclia, (9) Sideritis, (10) Marrubiastrum, (11) Swainsoniana and (12) Olisia. These 12 clades were formally named in a phylogenetic nomenclature for the Eurystachys clade. Several infrageneric units were retrieved as monophyletic, namely Sideritis sections Burgsdorfia, Empedoclia and Hesiodia, Sideritis subgenus Marrubiastrum and Stachys sections Eriostomum (including Stachys section Mucronata) and Setifolia. The findings of this study also provide the basis for a future formal classification, with two options: (1) splitting of the Eurystachys clade into 12 monophyletic genera, all of them based on pre-existing genus names and redefined to encompass additional taxa, but without clear morphological apomorphies;or (2) lumping of all segregates into a broadly defined Stachys, including widely recognized and well-defined segregates such as Prasium and Sideritis.

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