Abstract Detail



Floristics & Taxonomy

KUMAR, NARENDER [1], RANA, TIKAM SINGH [1].

A taxonomic revision of the genus Betula L. (Betulaceae) in India.

The family Betulaceae contains 6 genera and approximately 170 species all over the world. Betula L. is the largest genus of the family Betulaceae with ca 65 taxa in the world  and five taxa of Betula (B. alnoides Buch.-Ham. ex D. Don, B. ashburneri, B. cylindrostachya Lindl. ex Wall. B. utilis subsp. jacquemontii (Spach) Ashburner & McAll.) and B.utilis subsp. utilis D. Don) are reported from Indian Himalayan region (IHR)Betula utilis subsp. jacquemontiiB. utilis subsp. utilis and B. ashburneri are the dominant birch species in the IHR and function as a bio-shield and helps to maintain the sub-alpine forests from destruction during heavy snowfall and avalanches. Betula alnoides and B.cylindrostachya are found in tropical and warm subtropical regions at lower altitudes.The bark of Betula utilis subsp. jacquemontii was used as paper for writing scriptures and texts in Sanskrit and other scripts, also used in various religious rituals since ancient times. Different species of Betula have been used as traditional herbal medicines in various indigenous systems of medicine in India, to cure  ailments like the healing of wounds, leprosy, skin infections, bronchitis, convulsions, diseases of the blood, and the ear. The taxonomy of the genus Betula has been controversial and complicated as several of its species exhibit parallel evolution of morphological traits, polyploidization events, and extensive hybridization and introgression.The correct identity and occurrence of genus Betula in India have been revisited based on literature survey, extensive herbarium studies, and field survey. In the present study, four species of Betula (B. alnoides Buch.-Ham. ex D. Don, B. ashburneri McAll.&Rushforth, B. cylindrostachya Lindl. ex Wall.  B.utilis subsp. utilis D. Don) and one subspecies (B. utilis subsp. jacquemontii (Spach) Ashburner & McAll.) are recognized in India. Taxonomy of the genus Betula have been studied during the present investigation and is discussed here.


1 - CSIR-National Botanical Research Institute,Lucknow, Plant diversity systematics&herbarium, 436, Pratap Marg, Lucknow - 226001, Uttar Pradesh, India, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, 226001, India

Keywords:
Betula
India
Taxonomy
distribution
revision.

Presentation Type: Poster Time and date to be determined
Number:
Abstract ID:609
Candidate for Awards:None


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