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Nucleotide sequences of the chloroplast trnL-trnF intergenic spacer were obtained for 21 of the 22 indigenous Asplenium taxa presently recognized from New Zealand. Nucleotide sequences of the chloroplast rbcL gene were also obtained from eleven New Zealand species representative of the diversity found in the trnL-trnF intergenic spacer. Phylogenetic analyses of these chloroplast sequence data indicate that the Asplenium species of New Zealand are not monophyletic. More specifically, the Asplenium species participating in hybridization in New Zealand form a closely related ‘Austral’ group, whereas the non-hybridizing species have closer affinities to species from outside New Zealand. Within the Austral group, three well-supported sub-groups are recognized, represented by the species A. bulbiferum, A. flaccidum, and A. obtusatum. Dating analyses reject an 80 million year old vicariant origin for any of the Asplenium lineages in New Zealand, and the distributions of the many Asplenium species disjunct between New Zealand and elsewhere appear best explained by long-distance dispersal. The likely chloroplast/maternal parent for each of the New Zealand octoploid species is discussed.
The spores of Lycopodium deuterodensum germinate after 3 weeks in the dark on a nutrient medium containing inorganic nutrients and glucose. The dark grown prothalli have the characteristics associated with Type I and II gametophytes – a ring meristem, radial symmetry, and lack paraphyses and photosynthetic lobes. The younger gametophytes have the carrot shape of a Type II gametophyte with a tapering base, a constricted neck, and a gametangial cap with antheridia. With additional growth, the gametophytes become as wide as long and finally wider than long. The wider than long gametophytes are the first to have both antheridia and archegonia on their gametangial caps. The largest gametophytes grown in culture are Type I with irregular disk shapes. The antheridia on all gametophytes are sunken and, for the Lycopodiaceae, the archegonia have medium sized necks with only 3–4 neck canal cells. Although the specific type of gametophyte has not been determined for this species, those grown in culture have the characteristics recognized for subterranean, nonphotosynthetic, mycorrhizal gametophytes of the Lycopodiaceae.
Revision of the Cuban species of Thelypteris, subgenus Amauropelta, section Amauropelta (Thelypteridaceae) resulted in a new species, Thelypteris basisceletica, characterized by subpetiolate laminae and up to 28 reduced proximal pinnae, which are deeply lobed and laciniate, with the lobes spreading, and proximally skeletal. In addition, we make the new combination, T. balbisii var. longipilosa. Illustrations as well as a key for the identification of the seven Cuban species in this group are also presented.