Original Research

New taxa of Babiana (Iridaceae: Crocoideae) from coastal Western Cape, South Africa

P. Goldblatt, J. C. Manning
Bothalia | Vol 40, No 1 | a180 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/abc.v40i1.180 | © 2010 P. Goldblatt, J. C. Manning | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 21 July 2010 | Published: 22 July 2010

About the author(s)

P. Goldblatt, B.A. Krukoff Curator of African Botany, Missouri Botanical Garden
J. C. Manning, Compton Herbarium, South African National Biodiversity Institute

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Abstract

Discovery of populations south of Elandshaai of a small-flowered plant closely allied to Babiana ringens led to a critical re-evaluation of this sunbird-pollinated Western Cape species. We conclude that these populations represent a new species, B. avicularis, recognized by long, arching, subterete leaves, and flowers with the lower part of the perianth tube sigmoid and ± 4 mm long, a dorsal tepal 15-18 mm long, pale green lower tepals directed forward, and a style dividing below the bases of the anthers. In addition, the southern coastal populations of B. ringens merit recognition as a separate subsp. australis, recognized by the smaller flower, filaments not reaching the apex of the dorsal tepal and the style dividing at or below the bases of the anthers. Field work along the Western Cape coast also resulted in the discovery of a new species, B. teretifolia, allied to the distinctive B. brachystachys but differing from that species in the linear, spreading, twisted tepals, filaments 12 mm long, white anthers 5.5-6.0 mm long, and the style dividing opposite the anther tips, with branches ± 5 mm long and notched at the tips.


Keywords

Babiana Ker Gawl; Iridaceae; southern Africa; systematics; winter rainfall region

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