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Volume 53, 1921
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Art. XL.—Notes on Specimens of New Zealand Ferns and Floweringplants in London Herbaria.

[Read before the Wellington Philosophical Society, 17th November, 1920; received by Editor, 9th December, 1920; issued separately, 8th August, 1921.]

The following notes are extracted from a number I made during a short stay in London in 1919. I was able to spend a few weeks in the British Museum and Kew herbaria examining, among other things, some of the type specimens collected by the Forsters and R. Brown, and those described by Bentham.

Polystichum Richardi (Hook.) Diels.

Aspidium coriaceum var. acutidentatum A. Rich., Voy. “Astrolabe,” Bot., 71, 1832. A. Richardi Hook., Sp. Fil., 4, 23, 1862. A. oculatum Hook., Sp. Fil., 4, 24, 1862.

Specimens of A. oculatum in the British Museum marked “Prope Tigadu, Tologa, Opuragi, Totaranui—Sir J. Banks and Dr. Solander (1769)” are the ordinary coastal forms of A. Richardi.

The earliest name applied to this species was a varietal one—acutidentatum of Richard—and it would conduce to stability of nomenclature if, following the zoological practice, such names were adhered to, but in deference to the rules for botanical nomenclature I use Richardi.

Davallia scoparia (Mett.) Hook.

Adiantum clavatum Forst. (not Linn.), Prodr., No. 459, 1786. Lindsaya scoparia Mett., Fil. N. Caled., 64. Davallia (Stenoloma) scoparia, (Mett.) Hook. & Bak., Syn. Fil., 101, 1868. D. Forsteri Carr. in Seem., Fl. Viti., 339, 1869 (no desc.); Baker, Syn. Fil., ed. 2, 470, 1874.

The specimen (No. 1550) collected by Vieillard in New Caledonia and quoted by Hooker and Baker (Syn. Fil., 101) is in the British Museum. On the same sheet are two specimens of a different species, labelled “Kanata, New Caledonia.” Another sheet with three specimens is marked “New Zealand, Dusky Bay, Messrs. Forster,” and, in a different handwriting, “Adiantum clavatum Forst.” These are identical with the species collected by Vieillard. It is probable that Carruthers (Fl. Viti., 339) gave them a new name on account of their difference from the Kanata specimens. In any case, Davallia scoparia is a tropical species, and, as suggested by Cheeseman, Forster's specimens were in all probability collected in some locality in Polynesia, and I would therefore recommend that the name D. Forsteri be omitted from the list of New Zealand plants.

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Zannichellia palustris L.

Zannichellia palustris L., Sp. Pl., 969, 1753. Z. Preissii Kirk (not Muell.), Trans. N.Z. Inst., 10, App. xl, 1878. Lepilaena Preissii Kirk (not Muell.), Trans. N.Z. Inst., 28, 499, 1896.

Specimens labelled “Lepilaena Preissii” and collected by T. Kirk at Rangiriri are in the British Museum. They are included with Z. palustris, being so determined by Ostenfeld. They appear to agree perfectly with specimens of Z. palustris collected by Cheeseman from the Waikato River.

Muehlenbeckia complexa (A. Cunn.) Meissn.

Polygonum complexum A. Cunn., Ann. Nat. Hist., 1, 455, 1838. Muehlenbeckia axillaris Bentham (not Walp.), Fl. Austr., 5, 275, 1870 (Lord Howe Island locality only); Oliver, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 49, 135, 1917.

In the Kew Herbarium are specimens from Lord Howe Island marked “M. axillaris.” In all the leaves are identical with specimens from East Cape, New Zealand—that is, small orbicular leaves, 10–12 mm. long. Further, the flowers are in short racemes or spikes. I would therefore include the Lord Howe plant under M. complexa.

Phrygilanthus tenuiflorus (Hook. f.) Engl.

The only specimen known, that in the Kew Herbarium, is a small twig with five leaves and several flowers; leaves about 30 mm. long. A note on the sheet states, “Very near L. celastroides.” On comparing these I found the leaves to be very different, but the flowers and inflorescence similar. It is not like any other New Zealand species.


This genus was founded by Salisbury (Trans. Linn. Soc., 9, 299, 1808) for the following three species: E. chrysophylla (Sandwich Islands); E. microphylla (New Zealand); E. grandiflora (New Zealand). These, with some others, differ from typical Sophora in the four-winged pod, short standard, and exserted stamens. The two groups are so distinct that I think Edwardsia should be reinstated as a separate genus, with E. chrysophylla Salisb as genotype. This species is near to E. tetraptera (Mill.), but has larger leaves and smaller flowers. Other species are E. mollis and E. interrupta, both large-leaved forms from India.

Edwardsia microphylla (Aiton) Salisb.

Sophora tetraptera Linné (not Miller), Suppl. Pl. Syst. Veg., 230, 1781; Forst., Prodr., 32, 1786. S. microphylla Aiton, Hort. Kew., ed. 1, 2, 43, 1808; Jacq., Hort. Schonbr., 3, 17. Edwardsia grandiflora var. microphylla Hook, f., Fl. Nov. Zel., 1, 52, 1853. Sophora tetraptera var. microphylla Hook. f., Handb. N.Z. Fl., 1, 53, 1864. Edwardsia Macnabiana R. Grah., Edin. N. Phil. Journ., 26, 195, 1838. Sophora chathamica Cockayne, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 34, 319, 1902 (Chatham Island). S. toromiro Phillipi, Bot. Zeit., 31, 743, 1873 (Easter Island).

Both Linné's and Salisbury's specimens came from New Zealand. E. Macnabiana is founded on Chilian examples. Specimens from Chile

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(including E. Macnabiana) and Juan Fernandez are indistinguishable from those from New Zealand. Those from Easter Island are similar, but the leaves and shoots are very hairy. In the Kew Herbarium they are kept as a separate species (S. toromiro). The Chatham Island form is a distinct variety or perhaps closely allied species.

Edwardsia prostrata (Buchanan).

Sophora prostrata Buchanan, Trans. N.Z Inst., 16, 395, 1884. S. tetraptera var. prostrata Kirk, Forest Fl. N.Z., 85, 1889.

Confined to the mountains of the South Island of New Zealand.

Edwardsia tetraptera (Miller).

Sophora tetraptera J. Miller, Ic. Pl., t. 1, 1780 (also S. tetraptera of Bot. Mag., t. 167; Lamarck, Ill. t. 325; and Aiton, Hort. Kew., ed. 1, 2, 43: fide Salisbury). Edwardsia grandiflora Salisb., Trans. Linn. Soc., 9, 299, 1808. Sophora tetraptera var. grandiflora Hook. f., Handb. N.Z. Fl., 1, 53, 1864. S. tetraptera var. howinsula Oliver, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 49, 139, 1917 (Lord Howe Island).

Miller's Sophora tetraptera is founded on specimens flowering and fruiting at Chelsea and Islington (England) introduced from New Zealand. The plate is good, and represents the large New Zealand form. There is no description. Salisbury described E. grandiflora from specimens collected by Sir J. Banks in New Zealand, and gives the references quoted above. This species is confined to the North Island of New Zealand, with a variety in Lord Howe Island.

Coriaria ruscifolia L.

Coriaria ruscifolia Linné, Sp. Pl., ed. 1, 1037, 1753. C. sarmentosa Forster, Prodr., 71, 1786.

Linné's species is based on plate 12 of Feuillet's Journ. Obs. Phys. Math. et Bot., 1725. The figure shows small broadly-ovate leaves in threes at the racemes and opposite elsewhere. Specimens agreeing with these, except that the leaves are all opposite, are in the British Museum from Talcahuano, Chile. A plant from Ternuco, Chile, has very large ovate acuminate leaves in both threes and twos. The South American forms cannot be distinguished as a species from those of New Zealand and Polynesia. Though the leaves may be more acuminate, and the racemes longer, with more scattered flowers, yet specimens from Fiji, Samoa, Sunday Island, and New Zealand are indistinguishable from Chilian examples.

Coriaria lurida Kirk.

Coriaria thymifolia Hook. f. (not Humb. & Bonpl.), Fl. Nov. Zel., 1, 45, 1853. C. lurida Kirk, Students' Fl. N.Z., 98, 1899.

This New Zealand species, hitherto referred to C. thymifolia, can easily be distinguished from all the American forms by the habit and shape of the leaves. C. thymifolia occurs from Mexico to Peru, and is a quite distinct species with small closely-set ovate acute leaves, which, though varying in size, are nearly constant in shape. The New Zealand plant has the leaves

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on the shoots much more narrow and acuminate. It passes by gradations into C. ruscifolia, and is possibly a derivative of that species. If the Andine C. thymifolia is likewise a derivative of the South American forms of C. ruscifolia, then the similarity of the two small-leaved mountain forms may be due to convergence in similar habitats; but they are nevertheless easily separated, and should not pass under the same name.

Aristotelia serrata (Forster).

Dicera serrata Forst., Char. Gen., 80, 1776. Friesia racemosa A. Cunn., Ann. Nat. Hist., 24, 1840. Aristotelia racemosa Hook. f., Fl. Nov. Zel., 1, 33, 1853.

Specimens marked “227 Dicera serrata, G. Forster Herbarium,” in the British Museum, and which I presume are the type of Forster's species, are the ordinary form of the plant usually known as Aristotelia racemosa. There are also specimens of the same species in the Kew Herbarium labelled “Herb. Mus. Paris, Dicera serrata Forst. Friesia racemosa A. Cunn., N. Zélande (Akaroa), M. Ste. Croix de Bellegny.” As Forster's name has more than fifty years' priority over Cunningham's it should be adopted.

Coprosma retusa Hook. f.

Coprosma retusa Hook. f., Journ. Bot., 3, 415, 1844. C. Baueriana Hook. f. (not Endl.), Fl. Nov. Zel., 1, 104, 1853.

In my account of the vegetation of the Kermadec Islands (Trans. N.Z. Inst., 42, 171, 1910) I omitted this, as I could find no specimens either on Sunday Island or in any New Zealand herbarium. There are two specimens in the Kew Herbarium collected on Sunday Island, August, 1887, by Cheeseman, so that the species should be reinstated in the Kermadec Island flora.