Jump to content
The Corroboree
Sign in to follow this  
occidentalis

Kaktusy special loph taxonomy revision

Recommended Posts

For those that haven't read the katusy lophophora special, the authors revise the taxonomy (morphological and ecological) and distribution of the genus and propose a division of the genus into 2 sections. The first one is section Lophophora and contains the species L. williamsii. The second is Diffusae and contains the species L diffusa, L fricii, and L koehresii.

Given the number of different taxonomic changes that have been thrown at these innnocent plants ;), any new system must be strongly supported or else it will just be another misguided attempt to make a square peg fit in a round hole. I am interested in the way the section Diffusae has been divided into 3 species but Lophophora has only one. Why were these 3 form-groups given species status? Does it make sense morphologially? Is it supported by the molecular evidence that already exists? Are there molecular or further morphological studies that could be undertaken to delineate these species more accurately? I wonder what the experts here think.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No takers?

Am I to infer that our resident taxonomy gurus and the many other sub-gurus who are interested in these plants either haven't read this publication or haven't thought about it at all?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I talked to a Loph guru recently and he said that much of the recent taxonomic revision is being done on the basis of seed morphology (rather than the previous system which was based on plant morphology). I don't know if the kaktusy revision is done on that basis though.

Really, I think a genetic analysis would be the most helpful here, but there have been a few starts and stops, with few results emerging. Probably a matter of funding.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I talked to a Loph guru recently and he said that much of the recent taxonomic revision is being done on the basis of seed morphology (rather than the previous system which was based on plant morphology). I don't know if the kaktusy revision is done on that basis though.

The kaktusy authors do use seed morphology in their evidence but this appears to be secondary support to the morphological and ecological evidence that their theory is fundamentally based on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven't seen the publication, but I am dumbfounded as to on what grounds L. fricii would be placed in with the "Diffusae." L. fricii grows in the northwestern range of L. williamsii populations, far from the southern growing L. diffusa, and on simple morphology clearly falls in with L. williamsii more than L. diffusa. Habermann of course found chemical similarities of L. fricii to L. diffusa, but I have always questioned the plant material Habermann was using and if it was in fact L. fricii from the locations we cite the plant as existing in today. Even if seed similarities exist this doesn't necessarily mean that they occur because of direct relationship. Independent evolution of similar traits among disimilar species has been known to occur in nature, and this could be cause for both seed and chemical similarities of L. fricii to L. diffusa (if such an association is unchallengeable). Plant observation and plant location indicates to me that L. fricii is closer in relation to L. williamsii than to L. diffusa. I'll start from this position and look for data that challenges this view and which has data that is verifiable.

~Michael~

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is there a source of information for the protocol of using seed morphology as the basis of a taxonomic study? It seems too shallow a form of data collection to me, but the more ideal methods such as molecular data seem outside the grasp of some of the people who are doing taxonomic work in cacti right now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anybody know about the proposed Lophophora brackii?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Archaea, this is from wiki:

Recent discoveries and botanical evidence indicates modern Lophophora species may in fact be divergent hybrids of Lophophora Diffusa and a species recently named Lophophora Brackii, a high altitude domed "white" peyote with 'Z' patterns and articulated ribbing that originates from a single population confined to a mountain near Viesca, Mexico.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Native_American_Church

I bet it just an L. williamsii ssp. (subspecies) decipiens, a heavily glaucus (white?) plant, commonly with protuberant poderia (tubercles) that give the appearance of the "Z" pattern among the axils, as feature that doesn't serve as a good distinguisher from either certain populations of L. williamsii or L. williamsii ssp. fricii.

L. fricii and L. decipiens are quite close in relation to each other with both growing in regions surrounding Viesca. Steve Brack and I had discussed this before and he supports L. fricii growing in the low hot flatlands with L. decipiens growing in a very few unnamed higher hill ranges. I'll probably guess L. brackii is Steve "Brack's" L. decipiens that someone threw his name on with no justification and against all the rules of nomenclature, something quite common with cacti, especially L. williamsii. I doubt Steve would even recognize the name, but then again, since L. decipiens is in all actuality an invalid name its disuse and the application of a new name might be justified. But since L. fricii appears to be valid in regards to the other plant from Viesca (but is it really?), and these plants from the hills seem to be a variant, there might be the possibility that this plant could take the name L. williamsii ssp. fricii var. brackii.

Leave it up to wiki to cause more confusion than it solves….and leave it up to me to…well, add a little more?

~Michael~

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's a map of the region around Viesca. The elevation mark where the ranges darken to brown is 1500 feet above sea level, not exactly mountains in my estimation, and I am not certain if the temperatures there get any more singificantly colder than the flatlands in such a desert environment. I don't know if it would be valid to use the term "high altitude" plant when describing " L. brackii."

~Michael~

post-19-1148778838_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's the original L. decipiens, a simple illustration of a plant of unknown origins. "Decipiens" meaning "deceiving."

Notice the "dome" like quality, rather than the "bulbous" quality.

~Michael~

post-19-1148779199_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just wrote Steve to inquire.

~Michael~

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A correction: In post #5 I said "L. fricii grows in the northwestern range of L. williamsii populations, far from the southern growing L. diffusa," but this isn't exactly true (I should have thought a second more about this). Here's a map to point out its general location.

~Michael~

post-19-1148780715_thumb.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I haven't seen the publication, but I am dumbfounded as to on what grounds L. fricii would be placed in with the "Diffusae." L. fricii grows in the northwestern range of L. williamsii populations, far from the southern growing L. diffusa, and on simple morphology clearly falls in with L. williamsii more than L. diffusa. Habermann of course found chemical similarities of L. fricii to L. diffusa, but I have always questioned the plant material Habermann was using and if it was in fact L. fricii from the locations we cite the plant as existing in today. Even if seed similarities exist this doesn't necessarily mean that they occur because of direct relationship. Independent evolution of similar traits among disimilar species has been known to occur in nature, and this could be cause for both seed and chemical similarities of L. fricii to L. diffusa (if such an association is unchallengeable). Plant observation and plant location indicates to me that L. fricii is closer in relation to L. williamsii than to L. diffusa. I'll start from this position and look for data that challenges this view and which has data that is verifiable.

~Michael~

The kaktusy authors state that L. fricii morphologically has more in common with diffusa and koehresii than with williamsii, and that it occurs within the range of L. williamsii but does not cross. I wonder if this holds true for cultivated plants? However they do position L. fricii somewhere on the edge of the section. Unfortunately (for the taxonomy issue) much of the space devoted to fricii is concerned with the history of collections and ethnological information on the people who used it traditionally. This latter point does have some taxonomic interest though because it is stated as being the 'king of the hikulis', which would suggest that it was a high quality alkaloid source (although does it suggest that those alkaloids are mescaline?).

The seed testa morphology issue is not really well explained in the kaktusy publication. There are some SEMs comparing the surface texture of diffusa and williamsii testa. If these images are representative of the general difference between the species then it does seem significant - but the authors don't discuss their methodology and two example pictures aren't really solid evidence of general difference. They do however state that L. fricii has a seed appearance more like L. williamsii than the rest of their section Diffusae, but maintain that there are differences in hilum morphology and testa surface texture that support inclusion in that section. But of course there is always the possibility that this characterstic is analogous, as you say Michael.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A correction: In post #5 I said "L. fricii grows in the northwestern range of L. williamsii populations, far from the southern growing L. diffusa," but this isn't exactly true (I should have thought a second more about this). Here's a map to point out its general location.

~Michael~

Interesting. That map is slightly different to the one in the kaktusy book. It's difficult to tell how different because of the differences in projection, but the kaktusy map places L. fricii completely inside the distribution area of L. williamsii.

Sorry I don't have a scanner, I could put some pics up.

Anyway, I should say that no matter what the taxonomy info is like, the kaktusy book is highly recommended for it's porn value alone :D.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
much of the space devoted to fricii is concerned with the history of collections and ethnological information on the people who used it traditionally. This latter point does have some taxonomic interest though because it is stated as being the 'king of the hikulis'

I am certainly interested in these issues, but I should note that there does not appear to be any comment in the literature (short of the Kaktusy piece) which addresses "ethnological information on the people who used it traditionally," and in fact neither of the two main L. williamsii using tribes, nor the few other known lesser ones, appear to ever have visited the area near Viesca to collect the plant. The Huichol went to San Luis Potosi to collect while the Tarahumara went to the Rio Grande area near Ojinaga, Mexico (Presidio, Texas). Both of these tribes have collected and sold to these other tribes and their pilgrimages are traditional (and religiously ceremonial) routes that likely haven't been deviated from for hundreds of years.

I might also add that never before my comments in Sacramental and Medicinal Cacti had there been any suggestion that L. fricii might have been the Tarahumara “híkuri walula saeliame,” “híkuri of great authority,” described by Lumholtz. But not even I put very much stock anymore in this suggestion I made when I wrote my book. I don't because I have spent more time in the study of the Huichol, and in some detail, of the Tarahuma cultures and pilgrimages. I am very curious if the Kaktusy piece cites their sources. Is my work mentioned in it?

I am very suspicious of the comments that L. fricii can not cross with L. williamsii. L. fricii, and L. decipiens, are clearly both self-sterile, unlike L. williamsii, something indicating their evolutionary division and isolation from L. williamsii. Habermann mentions the inability of L. jourdaniana (a plant I consider a cultivation inter-generic hybrid - a cultivar) to cross with other Lophophora, but this has proven to be inaccurate should he have been using material that today passes under that name. I'm uncertain of Habermann's plants, as is everyone, as he made no herbarium deposits. Could Kaktusy made a mistake on this point? I wonder. I also wonder if they are citing literature alone or are conducting their own experiments.

Lastly, and going back to my earlier comments, Habermann's L. fricii that tested as being more chemically similar to L. diffusa than to L. williamsii appears to be the only test ever conducted. If Habermann had L. diffusa, or even possibly L. viridescens (L. koehresii), then it certainly would have tested like L. diffusa. It is interesting to note though that L. decipiens had tested similar to L. williamsii, and it is quite clear that L. decipiens, and L. fricii, both coming from the same area and in many ways quite similar, should not show such a disparity in alkaloid makeup. This is also another reason why I think the L. fricii Habermann tested was not the current plant known as L. fricii. We don't even know how, who from, or what habitat Habermann got his plants for study.

There is more to this than meets the eye. I certainly should get the Kaktusy book, if only to raise some questions that may be fully appropriate to ask.

~Michael~

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hey archaea i cant remember where you were discussing the white z loph but i found this pic......

I found the kaktusy edition interesting but im not using it to draw any taxonomic conclusions, most interesting i found was the different descriptions of the phenotypes and the maps of distribution not to mention the pictures.

104-PeyoteCloseup.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey teonanacatl, you are aware that is just a standard L. williamsii that is outgrowing severe spider mite damage right?

~Michael~

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After seeing hundreds of williamsii of various accessions (8 geographically disparate?)

show huge variation in forms even at the 10c piece size

im not going to touch this with a 40 ' pole

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I got my answer from Steve Brack, but give me a bit to put it into perspective so as not to cause more confusion. I have little doubt after this correspondence that "L. brackii," a name that Steve never has heard of, is in fact the plant which he is familiar with as L. decipiens. Whether this is the same as earlier "L. decipiens" is questionable. The whole matter regarding L. decipiens is rife with error and misunderstanding. I've been slowly addressing new revisions to SMC and certainly will have more to say in the future. I now NEED to get the Kaktusy book.

Rev, morphological variation even in a single population of L. williamsii is great, but the flowers are quite similar. The L. fricii and L. decipiens' flowers differ quite a bit from L. williamsii, a plant whose flower is quite consistent over its full range from Texas to San Luis Potosi.

I have a photo of Steve Brack's L. decipiens I'll post in a bit.

~Michael~

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Damn, I love the information but the confusion is vexing. I know very little about the Loph group and the species myself and this is interesting, if not somewhat frustrating.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well previously i thought that is was from spider mite, but archaeas description made me think of it so i wondered if it indeed was or not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In my collection, the flat mites, little red things smaller than a 2 spotted mite, do that kind of damage. I really don't like them.

I think that white might be an age thing, mature tufted Lopho's look more sphere shaped and have more white tufts and are more likely to have Z shaped lines. I am not as willing to throw out the L brackii thing as most, but perhaps that is because I don't know as much about it. I try to keep an open mind but if it smells, looks and sounds like bullshit... it probably is.

One thing, I figured it was named for Steve Brack, that would mean he might know nothing about it, nobody in cacti would name a species after themselves, that is just stupid. Not just anybody can name a plant either, not anymore a least, not even the person who identifies it as new to the world, so there has to be something of a formal submission and if the name is valid or even proposed, then some form of submission should exist. I am still willing to look for the name, despite doubting it exists.

Edited by Archaea

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
One thing, I figured it was named for Steve Brack, that would mean he might know nothing about it, nobody in cacti would name a species after themselves, that is just stupid.

Really?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It used to be the case that the person who found it could name it, but that has changed so the rules of naming things prevent the person who finds it from naming it, so that is the first tier of defense against egotistical naming. Names should be descriptive and though some names are in honor of some person or other, it is considered in poor taste to pick a non-descriptive name.

I would not expect a proposed name, that was in honor of a person, to have origin in that person. Most people are not so full of themselves that they would propose a name after themselves. In many cases the person the name is coined in honor of would not become aware of the name until after it was accepted. What is the point in doing a name in honor of someone if it isn't official? Why even tell them unless and if it becomes official?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For those that haven't read the katusy lophophora special, the authors revise the taxonomy (morphological and ecological) and distribution of the genus and propose a division of the genus into 2 sections. The first one is section Lophophora and contains the species L. williamsii. The second is Diffusae and contains the species L diffusa, L fricii, and L koehresii.

Just for the record, Lophophora currently only has 2 accepted species acording to the ICSG - williamsii and diffusa. So the concept of dividing the genus into two subgenera along the same lines isn't really anything revolutionary. Whether the differentiation happens at genus, subgenus or species level is less important than the actual relationships between them. And this is where kaktusy rocks the apple cart. The ICGS accepts echinata and koehresii as synonyms of diffusa, while putting fricii into williamsii. Kaktusy contradicts this in regards to fricii and koehresii.

Surely, there are only a handful of species/subspecies to deal with in this genus, so it can't be that hard to get some meaninful genetic study done?!?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×