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Bothalia - African Biodiversity & Conservation

On-line version ISSN 2311-9284
Print version ISSN 0006-8241

Bothalia (Online) vol.52 n.1 Pretoria  2022 



A new name for the illegitimate later homonym Leonotis capensis (Benth.) J.C. Manning & Goldblatt (Lamiaceae: Lamioideae)



John C. ManningI, II

ICompton Herbarium, South African National Biodiversity Institute, Private Bag X7, Claremont 7735, South Africa
IIResearch Centre for Plant Growth and Development, School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg, Private Bag X01, Scottsville 3209, South Africa





The new combination Leonotis quinquedentata J.C.Manning & Goldblatt is provided as a replacement for the illegitimate later homonym L. capensis (Benth.) J.C.Manning & Goldblatt (2010), non L. capensis Raf. (1837).

Keywords: Africa; Leonotis (Pers.) R.Br.; Leucas R.Br.; nomenclature; taxonomy.




Morphological and molecular studies in Leucas R.Br. and allied genera in the Lamiaceae (Ryding 1998; Scheen & Albert 2009) have confirmed earlier suggestions by Singh (2001) that the Asian and Arabian-African taxa comprise two distinct phylogenetic lineages. From these studies, the African species of Leucas are now understood to be more closely allied to the other African members of the group in the genera Acrotome Benth. ex Endl., Isoleucas O.Schwartz, Leonotis (Pers.) R.Br. and Otostegia Benth., and Leucas has consequently been more narrowly circumscribed to include only Asian taxa (Scheen & Albert 2007).

As part of circumscribing monophyletic genera among the African taxa, Scheen & Albert (2007) transferred a species of Otostegia to each of the two genera Isoleucas and Moluccella L., and segregated a further four species in the new genus Rydingia Sheen & V.A.Albert. They further recommended that the remaining African species in the group be treated as part of an enlarged Leonotis. This recommendation was partially implemented by Manning and Goldblatt (2012) in their transfer of the southern African species of Leucas to Leonotis. The traditional separation of Leonotis from Leucas was based on the size of the flowers and on the colour and proportions of the corolla, and these differences are now understood to reflect differences in pollination systems: the larger, orange flowers with reduced lower lip of Leonotis s.str. are consistent with bird pollination and the smaller, white, more equally bilabiate flowers of Leucas with insect pollination (Iwarsson & Harvey 2003). The small genus Acrotome (8 spp.) has been provisionally retained pending further resolution of relationships in the group.

In its current circumscription, Leonotis is a genus of up to 60 or 70 species of annual or perennial herbs or subshrubs recognised by their strongly verticillate inflorescences with leaf-like bracts, and flowers with a 5- to 10-toothed calyx that is glabrous within, and a white or orange corolla with a bearded upper lip. Acrotome is morphologically distinctive in its beardless upper lip and included stamens held together by intermingling hairs (Codd 1985).

Unfortunately, one of the combinations in Leonotis published by Manning and Goldblatt (2012), L. capensis (Benth.) J.C.Manning & Goldblatt, is an illegitimate later homonym for L. capensis Raf. (1837). The latter name was proposed by Rafinesque (1837) as a replacement name for Phlomis leonitis L. when he transferred that species to the genus Leonotis to avoid a possible tautonym (Turland et al. 2018: ICN Art. 23.4). The combination L. leonitis does not, however, exactly repeat the generic name' (Art 23.4) and is therefore not a tautonym. It is, therefore, an illegitimate superfluous name for P. leonitis (Turland et al. 2018: ICN Art. 52.1), which epithet should have been used. No additional names are available for this taxon and the new name L. quinquedentata is provided here. The epithet refers to the five-lobed calyx that is distinctive for the species.

Leonotis quinquedentata J.C.Manning & Goldblatt, nom. nov. pro Lasiocorys capensis Benth., Labiata-rum genera et species 6: 600 (1848). Leucas capensis (Benth.) Engl.: 268 (1888). Leonotis capensis (Benth.) J.C.Manning & Goldblatt: 809 (2012), nom. illeg., non L. capensis Raf.: 88 (1837), nom. illeg. superfl. pro Phlomis leonitis L.: 398 (1767) [ = Leonotis ocymifolia (Burm.f.) Iwarsson].



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Codd, L.E., 1985, 'Lamiaceae', in O.A. Leistner (ed.), Flora of southern Africa, 28(4), 19-23, Botanical Research Institute, Pretoria.         [ Links ]

Engler, A., 1888 ['1889'], Plantae Marlothianae. Botanische Jahrbücher für Systematik, Pflanzengeschichte und Pflanzengeographie, 10, 242-285.         [ Links ]

Iwarsson, M. & Harvey, Y., 2003, 'Monograph of the genus Leonotis (Pers.) R.Br. (Lamiaceae)', Kew Bulletin, 58, 597-645.         [ Links ]

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Manning, J.C. & Goldblatt, P, 2012, Plants of the Greater Cape Floristic Region, Vol. 1: the Core Cape flora. Strelitzia 29, South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.        [ Links ]

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Ryding, O., 1998, 'Phylogeny of the Leucas group (Lamiaceae)', Systematic Botany, 23, 235-247.         [ Links ]

Scheen, A.-C. & Albert, V.A., 2007, 'Nomenclatural and taxonomic changes within the Leucas clade (Lamioideae; Lamiaceae)', Systematics and Geography of Plants, 77, 229-238.         [ Links ]

Scheen, A.-C. & Albert, V.A., 2009, 'Molecular phylogenetics of the Leucas group (Lamioideae; Lamiaceae)', Systematic Botany, 34(1), 173-181.         [ Links ]

Singh, V., 2001, Monograph of Indian Leucas R.Br. (Drona-pushpi) Lamiaceae. Scientific Publishers, Jodphur.         [ Links ]

Turland, N.J., Wiersma, J.H., Barrie, F.R., Greuter, W., Hawk-sworth, D.L., Herendeen, PS., Knapp, S., Kusber, W.-H., Li, D.-Z., Marhold, K., May, T.W., Mcneill, J., Monro, A. M., Prado, J., Prica, M.J. & Smith, G.F. (eds.), 2018, International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants (Shenzhen Code) adopted by the Nineteenth International Botanical Congress Shenzhen, China, July 2017, Regnum Vegetabile 159, Koeltz Botanical Books, Glashütten.         [ Links ]



John C. Manning

Submitted: 7 January 2022
Accepted: 20 April 2022
Published: 19 May 2022

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