Vorontsova, Maria .
Travels in East Africa – a quest for species boundaries in the wild spiny aubergines.
The genus Solanum is famous for its developmental plasticity and baffling morphological variability across space. Herbarium based species level taxonomy depends on the personal interpretation of researchers and the subsets of the world herbarium collections they have examined. I have studied ca. 10,000 herbarium specimens of Solanum subgenus Leptostemonum from Africa and Madagascar at the herbaria of BM, BR, EA, K, and P, and proposed a species level classification based on the specimen data. Regions of greatest spiny Solanum diversity in Kenya and Tanzania were visited in May 2009 and March – April 2010 and 20 species were observed in the wild. Evidence for species boundaries provided by herbarium specimens was compared with field observations. Species boundaries were confirmed for 15 species, and frequent occurrences of sympatric species were observed. I will compare herbarium evidence and field evidence for each of the 20 species, and discuss implications for future herbarium work and the importance of field observation.
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PBI Solanum: Solanaceae Source
Hunting for wild spiny aubergines in Tanzania: Natural History Museum blog
Maria Vorontsova: CV
1 - Natural History Museum, Botany Department, Cromwell Road, London, London, SW7 5BD, UK
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: 556B/Convention Center
Date: Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010
Time: 3:45 PM