Scleropodium australe is known from a single population in a suburb of Hobart, Tasmania and is the only southern hemisphere representative in an otherwise north temperate genus. It was originally segregated from S. cespitans based on two quantitative characters, median lamina cell width and relative costa length. Molecular data presented here (ITS, rps4, trnG, psbA2) indicate that S. australe is nested within a well supported clade of S. touretii. Morphological measurements also fail to demonstrate any differences between S. australe and S. touretii. Based on the lack of any molecular or morphological differences between these species and the single known station of the latter species at a ruderal site, S. australe is reduced to synonomy with S. touretii, with the interpretation that the Tasmanian population is introduced from Europe.
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Vol. 113 • No. 4