Monographs Details: Everardia montana Ridl.
Authority: Maguire, Bassett. 1965. The Botany of the Guayana Highland. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 12 (3): 1-285.
Family:Cyperaceae
Scientific Name:Everardia montana Ridl.
Discussion:Everardia montana complex as here interpreted consists of five entities, E. montana, E. glaucifolia, E. duidae, E. ptariensis and E. guaiquinimae. Detailed comparison made on 241 individuals of 63 collections of the complex revealed that these taxa may be discerned by leaf characters, but otherwise they are very similar to each other on morphological characters that are common in all taxa of the complex. Among the common characters the cilia of the hypogynous squamellae are the most remarkable. With the short yellowish ciliae all taxa of the complex can be sharply distinguished from the rest of the species in Everardia having whitish cilia. Figure 6 shows that the fructifications of the complex are consistently obovate to obovate-oblong with a subulate beak that is invariably shorter than the body. They vary to a considerable extent in pubescence and size, but such variation is not correlated at all to other characters and geographical distribution. The leaf-surfaces as mentioned above are more significant than the characters of fructifications in distinguishing these taxa. Four of the five plants of this complex have individual leaf-surf ace features. In E. duidae leaf blades are verrucose, thick and very weakly involute; in E. glaucifolia they are straightish, flat and highly glaucous; in E. ptariensis they are rigid, short and spreading as a rosette; in E. guaiquinimae they are more or less glaucous and pubescent. The blades in typical E. montana are more variable than those of the four others. They are typically recurved, rather thin with more or less revolute margins, and not glaucous at all. In specimens from certain areas, however, the blades show some transitional status. For example, in plants from Cerro Sipapo and Cerro Yutaje the blades tend to be slightly glaucous and flat, and thus approach those of E. glaucifolia; in the specimens from Vaupes, Colombia, the blades are glaucous as in E. glaucifolia but are flat and soft as in typical E. montana; or in plants from Cerro Duida blades tend to be variably or hardly at all verruculose. Typical E. montana has a wide range covering all Venezuelan Guayana from Cerro Sipapo eastwards to Roraima. The ranges of all other taxa of the E. montana complex are restricted to very localized spots within the range of typical E. montana. W h e n we combine this distributional evidence with morphological data discussed above, there are correlations between distribution and leaf surface feature to some extent. The small taxa in the complex may, therefore, well be considered to be later developments possibly due to the isolation for a long period, whereas typical E. montajia with broad range and elasticity in morphological characteristics is assumed to be more closely related to the prototypic feature the E. montana complex. On this basis we regard the four taxa as subspecies of E. montana as reinterpreted below.