Abstract

In the course of a taxonomic revision of several clades of Greater Antillean Melastomataceae, we discovered a previously undescribed species, Miconia abscondita, from the Massif de la Hotte, Haiti. Miconia abscondita is based on a vegetative collection by Swedish botanist, E. L. Ekman, which was made in 1926. This new species is a member of the Mecranium clade, a group well supported on the basis of both morphological and molecular data, but which is highly embedded within the phylogenetic structure of the genus Miconia. Miconia abscondita is clearly placed within the Mecranium clade on the basis of DNA sequence data, and this placement also is supported by the form of its hairs and, especially, the pattern of stem indumentum; however, it matches no currently described species. Miconia abscondita is thus described, illustrated, and compared with putatively related and/or phenetically similar species. The discovery of M. abscondita brings to 25 the number of recognized species within the Mecranium clade and to 11 the number of species occurring in the Massif de la Hotte, Haiti, a region of exceptional biodiversity that is under continuous threat from anthropogenic pressure.

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