Clearing confusion in Stylosanthes taxonomy. 2. S. macrocephala M.B. Ferreira & Sousa Costa vs. S. capitata Vogel and S. bracteata Vogel

Rainer Schultze-Kraft, Bruce G. Cook, Arsenio Ciprián


Stylosanthes macrocephala was described as a new species in 1977 and has become an economically important pasture legume. It has recently been claimed to be conspecific with S. capitata, also an economically important species. This paper refutes this synonymization and summarizes morphological descriptions as well as genetic studies and cytological evidence indicating that diploid S. macrocephala should be considered a separate species, even being a likely progenitor of tetraploid S. capitata. Early confusion with S. bracteata is also discussed.

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