NOVON 8: 94-100. 1998.

New Taxa, New Combinations, and Observations in Kengyilia (Poaceae: Triticeae)

Chi YEN and Jun-Liang YANG

Triticeae Research Institute, Sichuan Agricultural University, Dujiangyan City 611830, Sichuan, China

Bernard R. Baum

Eastern Cereals and Oilseeds Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Central Experimental Farm, K.W. Neatby Building, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1A 0C6

Abstract. A new species is described and five new combinations are made in Kengyilia. The new taxa are Kengyilia eremopyroides and K. batalinii var. villosissima. Kengyilia longiglumis and K. nana are reduced to K. alatavica var. longiglumis and K. nana to K. batalinii var. nana, respectively. Roegneria carinata, Elytrigia kryloviana, and Elytrigia pulcherrima are transferred to Kengyilia as K. carinata, K. kryloviana, and K. pulcherrima, respectively.

We first described Kengyilia Yen & J. L. Yang in 1990 (Yen & Yang, 1990) and soon afterward added a new species to it (Baum et al., 1991). Subsequently, we provided a synopsis and key to the 16 species of the genus known to us at the time (Yang et al., 1992). Cai and Cui (1995) have since added two more new species. This genus, with approximately 20 species, is distributed primarily in west China, with some species found in countries west of China. We recently investigated the taxonomic relationships with and differences between its congeners Roegneria, Elymus, and Agropyron (Baum et al., 1995) and provided a key to identify these four genera. We are currently preparing a taxonomic monograph of Kengyilia. Toward this goal we are searching for type material in different herbaria.

A recent visit to the Komarov Botanical Institute, St. Petersburg, Russia, during the summer of 1995, by Yen and Yang was carried out to study type material of Kengyilia. Morphological examinations of specimens, especially type material, led to the conclusion that a number of species in Kengyilia were hitherto misnamed and that other species needed to be incorporated within Kengyilia. The purpose of this paper is to document the new combinations and revisions in Kengyilia resulting from the examinations carried out during the recent visit to LE.

Materials and Methods

Morphological examinations were performed on herbarium materials, including type collections, from the following herbaria: JSBI, K, LE, NUBD, PE, SAUTI, TK. Characters on these specimens were evaluated for quantitative and qualitative measurements and compared to various pertinent protologues for taxonomic assessment.

Results---Taxonomic Treatments

1. Kengyilia alatavica (Drobov) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum var. longiglumis (Keng & S. L. Chen) Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, comb. nov. Basionym: Roegneria longiglumis Keng & S. L. Chen, Acta Nanking Univ. (Biol.) 1: 83. 1963. Kengyilia longiglumis (Keng & S. L. Chen) Yang, J. L., Yen & Baum, Hereditas 116: 27. 1992. TYPE: China. Gansu, on slopes, alt. 2500 m, July 6 1937, T. P. Wang No. 7080 (holotype, PE). Figure 1A.

Distribution. China: Gansu, Xiahe; Xinjiang, Yecheng, Taxkorgan and between Wuqia and Turugar, on dry slopes and scree, alt. 2500--3340 m.

This is what was known hitherto as K. longiglumis, from the Chinese material that was examined. Our comparative studies proved that K. longiglumis is a taxonomic synonym of K. alatavica. The Chinese material is here recognized as a separate variety; it differs from K. alatavica var. alatavica by its hairy leaf sheaths and culms, and by the short rounded lodicules (Fig. 1a). The pointed lodicules of the typical variety are shown in Figure 1B.

2. Kengyilia batalinii (Krassnov) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum var. villosissima Roshevitz ex Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, var. nov. TYPE: Turkestan. Pamir, near Karakuli Lake, July 5 1901 (holotype, LE). Figure 2.

Kengyliae batalinii (Krassnov) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum affinis, sed laminis supernis dense villosis, laminis infernis glabris vel sparsim ciliolatis, spicis dense albus-villosis, glumis dense pubescentibus, lemmatibus dense villosis differt.

This variety differs from the typical variety by its leaf blades villous on the upper surface and glabrous or sparsely ciliate on the lower surface, the spikes densely white villous, and the glumes and the lemmas densely villous. See key below to identify this variety and the other two in K. batalinii.

Distribution. Turkestan.

3. Kengyilia batalinii (Krassnov) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum var. nana (J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum) Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, comb. nov. Basionym: Kengyilia nana J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum, Canad. J. Bot. 71: 339--345. 1993. TYPE: China. Taxkorgan, Pamir Plateau, in alpine steppe, alt. 4200 m, Sep. 6 1987, C. Yen et al. 870502 (holotype, SAUTI).

This variety differs from the typical variety in having leaf sheaths with densely pubescent or ciliate margins, leaf blades that are densely hairy on the adaxial surface and shortly pubescent on the abaxial surface, and slightly smaller spikes. It grows at higher elevations than variety batalinii.

Distribution. China.

This is what was known hitherto as K. nana, now an established taxonomic synonym of K. batalinii. This variety is confined to higher altitudes than the typical variety.

The three varieties in K. batalinii may be distinguished by the following key.

1a. Leaf blades glabrous.......................... var. batalinii

1b. Leaf blades beset with hairs at least on upper surface.

2a. Leaf blades villous on upper surface, glabrous or sparsely ciliate on lower surface...................var. villosissima

2b. Leaf blades with short pubescence on upper surface, and with dense hairs on lower surface............................var. nana

4. Kengyilia carinata (Ovczinnikov & Sidorenko) Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, comb. nov. Basionym: Roegneria carinata Ovczinnikov & Sidorenko, Fl. Tajik SSR 1: 505 (No. 310). 1957. Agropyron carinatum (Ovczinnikov & Sidorenko) Melderis. TYPE: Russia. In the lower part of the northern slope of Jiptyk valley---a tributary of the Isfar, 28 June 1938, Mikeshin, G. No. 79 (holotype, LE). Figure 3.

This species differs from K. alaica in having sturdy, densely tufted culms with 4--5 nodes, broad leaves, dense spikes, and glumes sparsely covered with long hairs.

Tzvelev (1976) treated R. carinata Ovcinnikov & Sidorenko as a synonym of Elytrigia batalinii ssp. alaica (Drobov) Tzvelev, based on the Mikeshin specimen of 26 July 1938, No. 79, probably by mistake confusing it with No. 81. The herbarium of the Komarov Botanical Institute (LE) has two sheets collected by J. B. Mikeshin. One is the type. The other is No. 81, collected on 10 Aug. 1938. Nevski annotated the type as Roegneria abolinii (Drobov) Nevski f. breviaristata Nevski. In 1956, P. N. Ovczinnikov annotated it as Roegneria carinata. The subsequent year he published R. carinata with Sidorenko. Thus, No. 79 is the holotype. In 1958 Melderis annotated this specimen as Agropyron carinatum. Specimen No. 81 is a loosely caespitose, delicate grass with 1--2 nodes, and culm and narrow leaves situated at the base of the plant, identified as Kengyilia alaica (Drobov) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum. In March 1959 Tzvelev affixed the following annotation on this specimen "Roegneria carinata Ovczinnikov et Sidorenko Topotype = Agropyron alaicum Drob." We agree that it is "A. alaicum Drobov," but it is not "R. carinata," i.e., Agropyron alaicum and Roegneria carinata are different species.

5. Kengyilia eremopyroides Nevski ex Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, sp. nov. TYPE: China. "Lacus Orin-Nor sole argilloso-sabuloso porce," alt. 3962 m (13000 ft.), 10/30 July 1884, N. M. Przewalski No. 339 (holotype, LE). Figure 4.

Kengyiliae melantherae (Keng) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum affinis, sed culmis sub inflorescentiis dense pubescentibus, laminis dense pilosis, spicis brevioribus (4--4.5 cm) et angustioribus, lemmatibus dense hirsutis non villosis differt.

This species resembles Kengyilia melanthera (Keng) J. L. Yang, Yen & Baum but differs in having the culm densely pubescent below the spikes, leaf blades that are densely pilose on both surfaces, narrower and shorter spikes, and densely long hirsute (but not villous) lemmas.

Perennials, with short rhizomes; culms densely caespitose, erect, 31--37 cm tall, about 1.5--2 mm diam., glabrous except for the upper internode pubescent below the spike, with 2 nodes. Leaf sheaths glabrous; ligules scarious membranous, truncate, about 0.5 mm long; leaf blades flat, (1.5--)2--5.5 cm long, 2.5--3 mm wide, their adaxial surface pilose and their abaxial surface densely pilose. Spikes erect, oblong, (3.5--)4--4.5 cm long, 8--10 mm wide; rachis internodes densely pilose, the uppermost internodes 1.5--2 mm long, the lowermost 5--7 mm long; spikelets ovoid, slightly secund, straw or purple colored, with 4--6 florets, 10--11 mm long (excluding awns); rachilla internodes 0.8--1.2 mm long, densely puberulous; glumes unequal, ovoid, 3--5-nerved, glabrous, acute, mucronate, first glumes 4--4.5 mm long, second glumes 4.5--5 mm long; lemmas ovate-oblong, 7--8 mm long, densely hirsute, apex acuminate ending with a 3--4 mm scabrous long awn; palea shorter than lemma, 0.5 mm long, with an emarginate apex, with keels sparsely ciliolate in their upper part; anthers black, 2 mm long.

Distribution. China, Known only from type locality.

The type specimen was initially annotated as a new species of Wheatgrass, namely Agropyron eremopyroides, by Nevski in 1931, but never published.

6. Kengyilia kryloviana (Schischkin) Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, comb. nov. Basionym: Agropyron krylovianum Schischkin, Fl. Zapod. Sibir. 2: 353. 1928. (Animadvers. syst. ex Herb. Univ. Tomsk No. 2). Elytrigia kryloviana (Schischkin) Nevski, Tr. Bot. Inst. Akad. Nauk SSSR, ser. 1, 2: 84. 1936. TYPE: Russia. West Siberia, Altai, Valley of river Chuya (holotype, TK).

Distribution. Stony and grassy slopes, rocks and screes of the middle mountain belt in Russia (West Siberia: Irtysh, Altai; East Siberia: Angana-Satan) and Kazakhstan (Northern Balkhash).

Earlier (Baum et al., 1991), we suspected that this species, formerly belonging to Agropyron (Tzvelev, 1976: 145), might belong to Kengyilia. Essential differences between this species and Kengyilia habahenensis Baum, Yen & J. L. Yang are given in Table 1.

7. Kengyilia pulcherrima (Grossheim) Yen, J. L. Yang & Baum, comb. nov. Basionym: Agropyron pulcherrimum Grossheim, Tiflis Bot. Sada [Moniteur du Jardin Botanique de Tiflis] 13--14: 42. 1919 (also Plate 4, fig. 1--5). Elytrigia pulcherrima (Grossheim) Nevski, Tr. Sredneaz Univ. Ser. 17: 51. 1934. E. intermedia (Host) Nevski subsp. pulcherrima (Grossheim) Tzvelev, Novost. Sist. Vyssh. Rast. 10: 31. 1973. TYPE: Turkey. "Prov. Kars, distr. Ardahan, prope Guljabert, in locis stepposis, 25/7/1914, A. Grossheim" (holotype and isotype, LE). Figure 5.

Agropyron intermedium var. ambigens Haussknecht in Halácsy Consp. Fl. Graec. 3: 437. 1904. A. ambigens (Haussknecht) Roshevitz, Fl. Turkm. 1: 191. 1932. TYPE: Greece. "Iter Graecum, Pindus Tymphaeus prope Malakassi, in schistosis, 18 VII 1886, C. Haussknecht" (isotype, LE).

Agropyron popovii Drobov, Feddes Rep. 21: 44. 1925. TYPE: Turkumenistan. "Distr. Askhabad, 1921, M. Popov No. 706" (lectotype, designated by Tsvelev, TAK).

Distribution. Russia, Caucasus, eastern and southern Transcaucasia; Turkumenistan; Tian-Shan; Syr Darya; Balkans; and Iran on slopes in steppe.

This species has a unique morphological feature, not found in other Kengyilia species and related genera. This is the large, hyaline, triangular appendages on both sides of the upper margins of the palea (Fig. 5B).

Acknowledgment. The authors thank J. Cayouette, Agriculture & Agrifood Canada, Ottawa, for help with the Latin and for useful comments.

Literature Cited

Baum, B. R., C. Yen & J. L. Yang. 1991. Kengyilia habahenensis (Poaceae: Triticeae)---a new species from the Altai mountains, China. Pl. Syst. Evol. 174: 103--108.

Baum, B. R., J. L. Yang & C. Yen. 1995. Taxonomic separation of Kengyilia (Poaceae: Triticeae) in relation to nearest related Roegneria, Elymus, and Agropyron, based on some morphological characters. Pl. Syst. Evol. 194: 123--132.

Cai, L. B & D. F. Cui. 1995. New taxa of the genus Kengyilia from China. Bull. Bot. Res. 15: 422--427.

Tzvelev, N. N. 1976. Grasses of the Soviet Union. Zlaki SSSR. Nauka, Leningrad [Translated for the Smithsonian Institution from Russian, Washington, 1963].

Yang, J. L., C. Yen & B. R. Baum. 1992. Kengyilia: synopsis and key to species. Hereditas 116: 25--28.

Yen, C. & J. L. Yang. 1990. Kengyilia gobicola, a new taxon from west China. Canad. J. Bot. 68: 1894--1897.