Chromosome Numbers in the Chilean Endemic Genus Leucocoryne (Huilli)

in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
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  • 1 Department of Agronomy, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, Quillota, Chile

Few cytological studies have been conducted on the endemic Chilean genus Leucocoryne, which is comprised of 14 species and a number of populations whose taxonomy has not been elucidated. Eleven species/populations of Leucocoryne have been examined cytologically and L. ixioides (Hook.) Lindl., L. coquimbensis var coquimbensis F.Phil., L. narcissoides R. Phil., L. sp. `Alcones', L. sp. `Talinay' and L. sp. `Combarbalá' were observed to be 2n = 18; L. purpurea Gay, L. sp. `Ñague', L. sp. `Alicahue' and L. sp. `Pichicuy' are 2n = 10 and L. coquimbensis var alba had 2n = 14. Furthermore, a natural hybrid population of L. purpurea and L. coquimbensis var coquimbensis had individuals with 2n = 14 and 2n = 22 chromosomes in addition to the normal complement of 2n = 10 and 2n = 18. The results indicate that Leucocoryne with the exception of L. coquimbensis var alba is typically either 2n = 10 or 2n = 18 with a similar number of species or populations at each ploidy level. Furthermore, the hybrid population demonstrated that there is gene flow between the species at different ploidy levels.

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