Fossil leaves of Banksia, Banksieae and pretenders: resolving the fossil genus Banksieaephyllum
Carpenter, RJ and Jordan, GJ and Hill, RS, Fossil leaves of Banksia, Banksieae and pretenders: resolving the fossil genus Banksieaephyllum, Australian Systematic Botany, 29, (2) pp. 126-141. ISSN 1030-1887 (2016) [Refereed Article]
The genus Banksieaephyllum, originally erected for cuticle-bearing fossil leaves of subtribe Banksiinae (Proteaceae subfamily Grevilleoideae, tribe Banksieae), is reassessed. Of the 18 described species, nine are accepted within Banksia, including Banksieaephyllum obovatum Cookson & Duigan, which is synonymised with B. laeve Cookson & Duigan on the basis of new cuticular preparations. Two other species are transferred to Banksieaefolia gen. nov., a genus erected for Banksieae of uncertain affinities, and which presently includes only fossils that probably belong to subtribe Musgraveinae. The seven other Banksieaephyllum species lack definitive characters of Proteaceae (i.e. brachyparacytic stomata and annular trichome bases) and do not have Banksieae-type cylindrical trichome bases. These species are, therefore, not accepted as Proteaceae and are transferred to Pseudobanksia gen. nov., together with another fossil Banksia-like leaf species, Phyllites yallournensis Cookson & Duigan. Lectotypes are chosen for Banksia fastigata H.Deane, Banksieaephyllum acuminatum Cookson & Duigan, Banksieaephyllum angustum Cookson & Duigan and Banksieaephyllum laeve Cookson & Duigan. Implications arising from the re-assessment of Banksieaephyllum include clarification of biome conservatism in Banksieae; Banksia has long had an association with relatively open, sclerophyllous vegetation, and Musgraveinae with rainforest. Pseudobanksia and Banksia share convergent traits, but in contrast to Banksia, Pseudobanksia failed to survive the drying climates and increased fire-frequencies of the Neogene.