Atkinson, Brian , Rothwell, Gar , Stockey, Ruth .
Permineralized vegetative shoots and seed cones from the Lower Cretaceous of Vancouver Island, British Columbia: A new genus of Cunninghamia-like conifers (Cupressaceae).
A new genus of anatomically preserved Cupressaceae (sensu lato) is described based on leafy shoots and seed cones from the Lower Cretaceous of western Canada. These include five seed cone specimens and three vegetative shoots. The attachment of one cone to a vegetative shoot documents that all of the specimens represent the same species. The vegetative remains have helically-arranged, needle-like leaves, similar to living and extinct species of Cunninghamia. Seed cones are cylindrical in shape, 1.3 to 1.5 cm long, and 0.4 cm in diameter, with helically-arranged, bract-scale complexes. The ovuliferous scale is a highly reduced shoot that is fused to the bract except for three free apical lobes. There are three inverted seeds borne on the adaxial side of the bract-scale complex. Seed cones display a novel combination of characters, but are similar in many respects to species of Cunninghamia, Cunninghamiostrobus, and Hughmillerites, thus placing this new taxon among the basal Cupressaceae s.l. The novel combination of characters that delimit this plant consists of 1) needle-like leaves, 2) bract/scale fusion except for the tip, 3) three seeds per scale, 4) no interseminal ridge, 5) three free apical lobes of the ovuliferous scale, 6) no vertical division of the bract-scale trace, 7) one resin canal at the origin of the bract-scale complex, 8) continuous resin canal system, 9) one resin canal diverging with the bract trace, 10) resin canals arising de novo in bract, and 11) no resin canals in the bract-scale complex at the level of the seed body adaxial to the vascular strand.
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1 - Ohio University, Department Of Enviromnental & Plant Biology, Porter Hall, Athens, OH, 45701, USA
2 - Oregon State University, Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, 2082 Cordley Hall, Corvallis, OR, 97331, USA
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: Union A/Hyatt
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2012
Time: 1:30 PM