Abstract Detail

Floristics & Taxonomy

Romoleroux, Katya Susana [1], Espinel-Ortiz, David A. [1].

Taxonomic novelties on the genus Rubus L. (Rosaceae) in Ecuador.

Rubus L. is the most diverse genus of the Rosaceae family with more than 500 species classified in 14 subgenera. The genus presents a cosmopolitan distribution with most species in Asia, Europe and North America. In South America, only four subgenera with less than 50 species have been reported, mostly throughout the Andes.
In Ecuador, the genus Rubus inhabits most of the Andean ecosystems between 450 to 4500 m a.s.l. However, it is most abundant between 2300 to 3500 m a.s.l., especially in disturbed areas, in hedges, clearings and on margins of cloud forests, and in “páramo” regions. Here, 21 species of Rubus were recorded in 1996 and classified in three subgenera: Idaeobatus (Focke) Focke, Orobatus Focke and Rubus L. The introduced subgenus Idaeobatus comprises 3 species, while the native subgenus Rubus consists of 10 native species, and endemic subgenus Orobatus entails 7 native and 2 endemic species in the country.
In the past two years, we have found two more species, and two new records of alien species: Rubus rosifolius Sm. and R. aff. ulmifolius Schott, two new species: Rubus longistipularis Espinel-Ortiz & Romol. and R. maquipucunensis Espinel-Ortiz & Romol. In regard to R. rosifolius, it is classified in the Idaeobatus subgenus, and there is no information about how this species was introduced to Ecuador. However, all the samples were collected in open roads or disturbed areas. This suggests that this species may have been used as a crop species and escaped a plantation. It also could have been introduced by migratory birds from neighboring countries that had this species. Within the country, R. rosifolius could have been dispersed by migratory birds, explaining how this species can be found in the north and south of the country. Rubus aff. ulmifolius is similar to the type of R. ulmifolius Schott, but differs from it by the leaves and inflorescences. Therefore, we were unable to give the specimens reviewed a clear identification.
Rubus longistipularis and R. maquipucunensis belong to the Rubus subgenus. Both species are distributed on the western Andean slopes of northern Ecuador. Herbarium specimens representing these two species showed low sample numbers and were often annotated as Rubus boliviensis, Rubus glaucus and Rubus floribundus because of the resemblance to these species. However, vegetative and reproductive characters of the new species differ greatly from the species mentioned before and, thus, can be easily differentiated. We also report, for the first time, possible hybridisation between R. longistipularis and R. boliviensis Focke, as the samples reviewed showed mixed characteristics from both species.
With the number of Rubus species recorded for Ecuador, the country hosts at least half of the diversity described for South America. This indicates that further research will probably reveal a higher number of Rubus species for the region.

1 - Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador, Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales, Av. 12 de Octubre 1076 y Vicente Ramón Roca, Quito, Pichincha, 170525, Ecuador

Taxonomy .

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Number: F&T II001
Abstract ID:538
Candidate for Awards:None

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