Turkish Journal of Botany




The needles from 25 trees of Abies equi-trojani from Kazdağı (Mount Ida) were compared with those from four populations of A. alba, two of A. cephalonica, and three of each of A. xborisii-regis, A. bornmuelleriana, and A. nordmanniana, each represented by 29-31 individuals. Thirty-nine morphological and anatomical needle characters (26 main and 13 estimated ones) were examined biometrically to verify the systematic position of A. equi-trojani. To evaluate the relationships among taxa, Student's t-test for independent samples, the Mann-Whitney U test, and discrimination and clustering analyses were applied. The differences between taxa were statistically significant for several characters, but the data ranges generally overlapped between species. Morphological and anatomical characters of the needle allowed to distinguish between A. equi-trojani, A. alba, A. cephalonica, A. xborisii-regis, A. bornmuelleriana, and A. nordmanniana when used together, but no single character applied separately could distinguish between species. A close relationship of A. equi-trojani to A. bornmuelleriana and to A. nordmanniana detected based on the needle characters supported the infraspecific systematic position of these three taxa.


Multivariate analyses, needle variation, plant variation, taxonomy

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