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Chionogentias (Gentianaceae), a New Generic Name for the Australasian `snow-gentians', and a Revision of the Australian Species

Adams, L.G.

Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research, G.P.O. Box 1600, Canberra, A.C.T. 2601 Australia.


The taxonomic and nomenclatural history of the Australasian snow-gentians (Gentianaceae) is reviewed and includes:

(a) the state of its taxonomy in Australia;

(b) the current tribal and subtribal context;

(c) the status of the infra-generic basionym Oreophylax Endl.;

(d) the status of sectionsAndicola Griseb. and Antarctophila Griseb., and

(e) the question of generic relevance of Gentianella Moench, Selatium G.Don and Pitygentias Gilg.

Past confusion within the Australasian component involving misapplication of the names Gentiana montana G.Forst., G. saxosa G.Forst. and G. diemensis Griseb. is resolved. The morphology, floral biology and breeding system of the purely Australasian elements are analysed and evidence is presented that justifies their taxonomic segregation as a new genus, Chionogentias L.G.Adams, gen. nov., typified by the New Zealand Chionogentias saxosa (G.Forst.) L.G.Adams.

A key to Australian taxa is provided; 14 species and 10 subspecies are recorded for Australia, of which 12 and 8 respectively are newly described. New combinations are made for 27 Australasian species originally described under Gentiana: Chionogentias antarctica (Kirk) L.G. Adams, C. antipoda L.G. Adams, C. astonii (Petrie) L.G.Adams, C. bellidifolia (Hook.f.) L.G.Adams, C. cerina (Hook.f.) L.G.Adams, C. chathamica (Cheeseman) L.G.Adams, C. concinna (Hook.f.) L.G.Adams, C. corymbifera (Kirk) L.G.Adams, C. diemensis (Griseb.) L.G.Adams, C. divisa (Kirk) L.G.Adams, C. filipes (Cheeseman) L.G.Adams, C. gibbsii (Petrie) L.G.Adams, C. gracilifolia (Cheeseman) L.G.Adams, C. grisebachii (Hook.f.) L.G.Adams, C. lilliputiana (C.J.Webb) L.G.Adams, C. lineata (Kirk) L.G.Adams, C. matthewsii (Petrie) L.G.Adams, C. montana (G.Forst.) L.G.Adams, C. patula (Kirk) L.G.Adams, C. pleurogynoides (Griseb.) L.G.Adams, C. saxosa (G.Forst.) L.G.Adams, C. serotina (Cockayne) L.G.Adams, C. spenceri (Kirk) L.G.Adams, C. tenuifolia (Petrie) L.G.Adams, C. tereticaulis (Petrie) L.G.Adams, C. townsonii (Cheeseman) L.G.Adams and C. vernicosa (Cheeseman) L.G.Adams.

Published in: Australian Systematic Botany Vol. 8: 935-1011 (1995).

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