J Syst Evol ›› 2016, Vol. 54 ›› Issue (2): 123-135.DOI: 10.1111/jse.12170

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

What is Allium paniculatum? Establishing taxonomic and molecular phylogenetic relationships within A. sect. Codonoprasum

Cristina Salmeri1*, Cristian Brullo2, Salvatore Brullo2, Giampietro Giusso Del Galdo2, and Ivan I. Moysiyenko3   

  1. 1Department of Biological, Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Technologies, Palermo University, via Archirafi 38, Palermo, Italy
    2Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, Section Plant Biology, Catania University, via A. Longo 19, Catania, Italy
    3Department of Botany, Kherson State University, 27, 40 rokiv Zhovtnja St., Kherson, Ukraine
  • Received:2014-06-13 Published:2015-09-02

Abstract: Allium paniculatum L. is commonly recorded from the Euro-Mediterranean and Irano-Turanian regions. Evidence from literature and herbarium collections revealed that many different taxa of A. sect. Codonoprasum Rchb., all characterized by big size, diffuse and densely flowered umbrella, very long spathe valves, long pedicels, and cylindrical-campanulate perigon, have been wrongly attributed to this species thus affecting records on its geographic distribution and morphological characterization. In order to define the true identity of A. paniculatum, we analyzed specimens coming from the type locality (Don River), and provided details on morphology, ecology, karyology, leaf anatomy, seed morphology and seed coat micro-sculpturing. Taxonomic and phylogenetic relationships with related species of sect. Codonoprasum and with other taxa of different sections were investigated by means of morphological characters and molecular data from the internal transcribed spacers (ITS) nrDNA and the trnH-psbA cpDNA region. Maximum parsimony and Bayesian inference analyses of molecular data recovered two main clades in A. sect. Codonoprasum and clearly separated A. paniculatum from related taxa. The taxonomic implications of these patterns of relationships are discussed. To our knowledge, this is the first study documenting in-depth phylogenetic relationships within A. sect. Codonoprasum.

Key words: Allium paniculatum, A. sect. Codonoprasum, karyology, morphology, phylogeny, seed coat sculpturing, taxonomy