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The identity and typification of Smilax grandifolia Regel, nom. illeg. and S. regelii Killip & C. V. Morton (Smilacaceae)

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Smilax regelii Killip & C. V. Morton (1936), universally applied to an economically important Central American sarsaparilla, is a nomen novum for an illegitimate later homonym, S. grandifolia Regel (1856, non Buckley, 1843), which has been declared recently to be a synonym of the South American S. longifolia Rich. and typified with material allegedly belonging thereto. Regel's description and relevant historical specimens indicate that Regel's concept of S. grandifolia does not make it synonymous with the South American S. longifolia but with the Central American taxon now called S. regelii. Demonstrably original material of S. grandifolia has not been located. A recently designated neotype of S. grandifolia, also not found and never seen by Regel, is in serious conflict with the protologue and must be rejected (Art. 9.17b). To maintain current nomenclature, S. grandifolia Regel is neotypified with an element, probably seen by Regel, whose origin is presumably from Central America. The correct name for Honduran or brown sarsaparilla remains S. regelii Killip & C. V. Morton.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2005

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