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Old World morelloids

Specimens used in the published monograph of the Old World members of the Morelloid clade of Solanum (black nightshades)

Särkinen TE, Poczai P, Barboza GE, van der Weerden GM, Baden M and Knapp S (2018) A revision of the Old World Black Nightshades (Morelloid clade of Solanum L., Solanaceae). PhytoKeys 106: 1-223.

The Morelloid clade, also known as the black nightshades or “Maurella” (Morella), is one of the 10 major clades within Solanum L. The pantropical clade consists of 74 currently recognised non-spiny herbaceous and suffrutescent species with simple or branched hairs with or without glandular tips, with a centre of distribution in the tropical Andes. A secondary centre of diversity is found in Africa, where a set of mainly polyploid taxa occur. A yet smaller set of species is found in Australasia and Europe, including Solanum nigrum L., the type of the genus Solanum. Due to the large number of published synonyms, combined with complex morphological variation, our understanding of species limits and diversity in the Morelloid clade has remained poor despite detailed morphological studies carried out in conjunction with breeding experiments. Here we provide the first taxonomic overview of the entire group in the Old World, including Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and islands of the Pacific since the 19th century. Complete synonomy, morphological descriptions, distribution maps, and common names and uses are provided for all 19 species occurring outside the Americas (i.e., Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and islands of the Pacific). We treat 12 species native to the Old World, as well as 7 taxa that are putatively introduced and/or invasive in the region. The current knowledge of the origin of the polyploid species is summarised. A key to all of species occurring in the Old World, together with line drawings and colour figures are also provided to aid identification both in herbaria and in the field. Preliminary conservation assessments are provided for all species.

Data and Resources

Cite this as

Sandra Knapp (2018). Old World morelloids [Data set]. Natural History Museum.
Retrieved: 10:47 03 Mar 2024 (UTC) BibTeX

Additional Info

Field Value
Primary contributors
Knapp, Sandra ( 0000-0001-7698-3945)
Other contributors
Last updated April 21, 2019
Last resource update April 21, 2019 (Specimens OW morelloids)
Created April 1, 2018
License Creative Commons Attribution