BEN # 232

Adolf Ceska aceska at VICTORIA.TC.CA
Fri Sep 17 20:58:46 EST 1999

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No. 232                              September 17, 1999

aceska at                Victoria, B.C.
 Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2


Scientists  in  the  US  Forest Service Olympia, Washington have
initiated a study of Oregon white oak/Garry  oak  acorn  produc-
tion.  They  are  looking for volunteers to survey oak trees for
acorn abundance in September and October this year and in future
years. Survey forms, instructions and additional information  on
this species can be found on the following web page:

From: Jan Suda <suda at>

Of  the  circumpolar species of cranberries, Vander Kloet (1983)
recognized only one broad  species,  Oxycoccus  palustris  Pers.
Other  authors considered the wide heterogeneity of this complex
and segregated the diploid  (2n=24)  as  a  separate  species  -
Oxycoccus  microcarpus  Turcz.  ex Rupr. Based on the chromosome
numbers, the hexaploid (2n=72) has been sometimes treated as  an
additional  separate  species,  Oxycoccus  hagerupii Love & Love
(Ahokas 1971a, 1971b, Gugnacka-Fiedor 1983, 1986, Ravanko  1990,
Wenderoth  & Wenderoth 1994). These authors follow the narrowest
concept where Oxycoccus palustris s. str. is restricted  to  the
tetraploid plants with 2n=48.

I  have conducted my research of cranberries in mountain regions
of the Czech Republic and I have come to the  following  conclu-
sions (Suda 1998):

 1. The  diploid  plants  (2n=24)  should be indeed treated as a
    separate species, O. microcarpus.

 2. Besides the tetraploid and hexaploid  plants  I  found  also
    pentaploid  populations.  Since  there  is  no  reproduction
    barrier between hexaploid and tetraploid  plants  and  since
    they  are very similar in their morphology, distribution and
    ecology, I suggest that tetraploids,  pentaploids  and hexa-
    ploids be treated as a single species, Oxycoccus palustris.

             Key to the identification of Oxycoccus

1. Leaves at least 12 mm long, lanceolate,  obtuse,  bluish-grey
   underneath, with margins slightly rolled under; inflorescence
   usually  at least four-flowered; bracteoles immediately below
   flowers; petals more than 8 mm long; berry at least 13 mm  in
   diameter with more than 12 seeds
   ................................  O. macrocarpus (Ait.) Pers.

1. Leaves usually less than 12 mm long, ovate, acute, white-grey
   underneath, with margins strongly rolled under; inflorescence
   usually  with  1-3 flowers; bracteoles about in the middle of
   the pedicel; petals at most 7.5 mm long; berry at most  13 mm
   in diameter with not more than 10 seeds.

   2. Stems  mostly  one-flowered;  pedicels glabrous; petals at
      most 5.5 mm long;  stamens  shorter  than  4  mm,  anthers
      (without  horns)  at most 1.2 mm long, always shorter than
      filaments; styles shorter than 5 mm; fruits less than 9 mm
      in diameter; seeds less than 1.8 mm long and 0.9 wide
      ..........................  O. microcarpus Turcz. ex Rupr.

   2. Stems usually with more flowers;  pedicels  pubescent  (at
      least  when  young);  petals  longer  than 5.5 mm; stamens
      longer than 4 mm, anthers (without horns) longer than  1.4
      mm,  as  long  as  or longer than filaments; styles longer
      than 5 mm; fruits  usually more  than  8 mm  in  diameter;
      seeds more than 1.7 mm long and 0.8 mm wide
      ......................................  O. palustris Pers.

Oxycoccus macrocarpus (Ait.) Pers.

Native  in eastern North America, and adventive in Europe and in
western North America where it has escaped from cultivation.

Oxycoccus microcarpus Turcz. ex Rupr.

Circumpolar species with more  northerly  distribution  than  O.

Oxycoccus  microcarpus can be distinguished from O. palustris by
having shorter corolla, shorter stamens and styles, by filaments
that are longer than  the  relatively  short  anthers  (measured
without  tubular  horns),  by  smaller  seeds,  and above all by
mostly single flowered, glabrous  pedicels.  These  two  species
also  differ in the size of their leaves and in their phenology:
where both species occur together, O. microcarpus flowers  about
2-3 weeks earlier than O. palustris. Oxycoccus microcarpus grows
most  often  in cushions of Polytrichum strictum, or in hummocks
of Sphagnum fuscum or S. compactum.  It  prefers  elevated,  not
shaded  habitats  free of any herbaceous vegetation. Wenderoth &
Wenderoth (1994) did not find any  instance  of  O.  microcarpus
growing  together with O. palustris. During my field work in the
Czech Republic, I found these two species growing together quite

Oxycoccus palustris Pers.

In the Czech Republic this species occurs in three ploidy levels
that can be morphologically  separated  with  great  difficulty.
Reliable  identification of the ploidy level of single plants is
impossible. One has to measure larger number of plants  and  use
averages  from  about  30  individuals.  With  the  use of these
average values one can  assign  the  measured  population  to  a
certain ploidy level.

Key   to  the  identification  of  ploidy  levels  of  Oxycoccus
palustris based on average values of the population.

1. Pollen tetrads deformed, aborted (usually with only less than
   50% of grains developed),  filaments  at  least  (1.2)-1.3 mm
   long; leaves not larger than 6.3(-7.5) x 3.2(-4.0) mm
   ........................................  pentaploid cytotype

1. Pollen  tetrads  well  developed,  uniform in size and shape;
   filaments at most 1.3 mm long, leaves in average larger  than
   6.2 x 2.9 mm

   2. Petals  5.1-6.2  long  and  2.3-2.7 mm wide; style at most
      6.1 mm long; bracteoles at most  1.7 mm  long;  bracts  at
      most 1.7-1.9 mm long; seeds not more than 1 mm wide
      .....................................  tetraploid cytotype

   2. Petals  6.3-7.2 mm  long and 2.6-3.3 mm wide; style longer
      than 5.9 mm; bracteoles longer than  1.6 mm;  bracts  more
      than (1.5-) 1.8 mm long
      ......................................  hexaploid cytotype

Tetraploid cytotype (2n=48)

Tetraploid  plants  occur in southern Bohemia in the Trebon area
and they are common in northern parts of Bohemia. Because of the
occurrence of pentaploid  cytotype  in  the  Sumava  Mtns.,  the
tetraploid cytotype is expected to occur there as well.

Pentaploid cytotype (2n=60)

I  was  the  first  one to report this pentaploid level from the
Sumava Mtns. and from northern Bohemia (Suda 1998).  The  plants
of  this ploidy level are most probably of hybridogenous origin.
The most reliable character to detect  this  ploidy  is  a  high
proportion  of aborted pollen tetrads. Additional characters are
relatively long  filaments  and  smaller  leaves  with  strongly
involuted  margins.  The  seed production is lower than in other
ploidy levels, but the seed germination is  about  the  same  as
that of other ploidy levels.

Hexaploid cytotype (2n=72)

Hexaploid cytotype (occasionally treated as a separate species -
O.  hagerupii  Love  &  Love) is the most common cytotype in the
Czech Republic. To distinguish hexaploids  from  tetraploids  is
possible  only  in the flowering plants. Plants of both ploidies
differ only in quantitative characters  (size  of  the  corolla,
length  of  the style, and length on bracts and bracteoles). The
size of seeds (especially their width) is an  important  distin-
guishing character in fruit bearing plants.


Ahokas,  H.  1971a. Cytology of hexaploid cranberry with special
   reference to chromosome fibers. Hereditas 68: 123-136.
Ahokas, H. 1971b. Notes on ploidy  and  hybridity  in  Vaccinium
   species. Ann. Bot. Fennici 8: 254-256.
Gugnacka-Fiedor,  W.  1983.  The variability of phenol compounds
   based on karyological studies of taxa of the genus  Vaccinium
   L.,  subgenus Oxycoccus (Hill) A. Gray. Acta Bot. Soc. Polon.
   52/1: 87-99.
Gugnacka-Fiedor,  W.  1986.  Zmiennosc  morfologiczna   taksonov
   rodzaju Oxycoccus Hill. [Morphological variability of taxa of
   the  genus  Oxycoccus Hill.] Stud. Soc. Sci. Torunensis 11/4:
Ravanko, O. 1990.  The  taxonomic  value  of  morphological  and
   cytological  characteristics  in  Oxycoccus (subgenus of Vac-
   cinium, Ericaceae) species in Finland. Ann. Bot. Fennici  27:
Suda,  J. 1998. Taxonomicka problematika rodu Oxyxcoccus v Ceske
   Republice se zvlastnim zretelem k uzemi Sumavy. [A  taxonomic
   study  of  the  genus  Oxycoccus in the Czech Republic, espe-
   cially in the Sumava Mountains.] Zpr. Ces. Bot.  Spolecnosti,
   Praha 32(1997): 189-195.
Vander  Kloet,  S.P.  1983. The taxonomy of Vaccinium Oxycoccus.
   Rhodora 85: 1-43.
Wenderoth, C. & K. Wenderoth. 1994. Zur Verbreitung karyologisch
   untersuchter Moosbeeren (Vaccinium oxycoccus s.l.) in  Teilen
   Mitteleuropas     (Mittel-    und    Sueddeutschland    sowie
   Oesterreich). Ber. Bayer. Bot. Ges. 64: 147-155.


From: Rudi Schmid  <schmid at>  -  originally
   published in Taxon 48: 631 (August 1999)

I  asked  Randy  Wilson,  reference librarian in the Biosciences
Library at UC Berkeley, and also the person responsible for book
acquisitions there, for the general  URLs  that  he  finds  most
useful  to  access  publishers.  His  answer  is  below: Another
worthwhile URL is that of of the Association of American Univer-
sity Presses:
This allows one to search all the  catalogs  of  the  individual
publishers. Two other helpful bookseller URLs are
of  Patricia  Ledlie  Bookseller (U.S.) [Comment added 9/99: The
Ledlie WWW site will end by 1 Jan. 2000] and
of Natural History Bookstore (U.K.). - Rudi Schmid

These are the five (actually seven) sites that I use most often,
when I'm not using Books in  Print  (BIP),  which  is  available
online at MELVYL, the digital library catalog for the University
of California and other academic libraries (it is unavailable to
single  users directly online). I've listed them by my frequency
of use.

 1. AcqNet  contains  the  most  complete  list  of   publishers
    worldwide  and  takes  you directly to the publishers search
    AcqNet also includes vendors  and  antiquarian  and  out-of-
    print dealers.
 2.  is  almost  as complete as BIP. It also includes
    links to U.K. and German versions of Amazon:
 3. Whitakers is the British version of BIP:
 4. The Co-op  Bookshop  is  an  Australian  online  source  for
    general and academic titles:
    It  includes  titles  published  by CSIRO, which has its own
    online catalog:
 5. For out-of-print and used books there is  Bookfinder,  which
    uses a search engine to search other Web catalogs:
    When  I  checked  this  site  recently it was down, which is
    probably appropriate for an out-of-print source.

There are many more sources out on the Web, but  these  are  the
ones  I use most often. I will add one more URL, for Osiander, a
bookseller in Germany. I've hardly used  it,  but  it  has  been
helpful those few times:

Randy Wilson <rwilson at>,
BIOS,  University of California, Berkeley, CA

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