Panarctic Flora


343302 Phippsia concinna (Th. Fr.) Lindeb.


Kanin - Pechora: Rare
Svalbard - Franz Joseph Land: Frequent
Polar Ural - Novaya Zemlya: Scattered
Yamal - Gydan: Frequent
Taimyr - Severnaya Zemlya: Frequent
Anabar - Onenyo: Scattered
Kharaulakh: Scattered
Yana - Kolyma: Scattered
West Chukotka: Rare
Central Canada: Rare
Ellesmere Island: Frequent
Western Greenland: Rare
Eastern Greenland: Scattered
Polar desert: Frequent
Northern arctic Tundra: Frequent
Mid Arctic Tundra: Frequent
Southern Arcti Tundra: Scattered
Shrub Tundra: Rare
Bordering boreal or alpine areas: Rare

2n= 28 29 (4x). - Europe (N), Siberia (N), Far East (N). - Several reports.
Not included (yet): Reports of 2n = 28 under this name from northern Canada (Bowden in Savile 1959; Bowden 1960a) are probably correct (see below) but should be confirmed by a check of the vouchers.

Geography: North American (N) - amphi-Atlantic - European (N) - Asian (N): NOR RUS SIB RFE CAN GRL.

Notes: The majority of authors have considered Phippsia concinna absent from Greenland, North America, and East Chukotka. Hultén and Fries (1986) mapped the species from the Chukchi Peninsula but Russian investigators have not been able to confirm this record. Moreover, Hultén (1968a) mapped it from St. Lawrence Island (Alaska) based on a mixed collection of P. algida and P. concinna, leg. Kjellman 1879 (S). Elven has studied the collection and confirm that it contains both P. algida and quite typical P. concinna (of the northern Eurasian morphological type, see below). As Kjellman visited several northern Russian and Siberian regions where P. concinna is common, the species should be recollected on St. Lawrence Island before being accepted for Alaska.

Elven and Aiken: Bowden in Savile (1959) and Bowden (1960a) accepted P. concinna from Canada. Bay (1993) reported P. concinna subsp. algidiformis from northern Greenland. We have compared specimens and confirm the identification of P. concinna from both Greenland and arctic Canada (at least Ellesmere and Ellef Ringnes islands, O), but it was not time to survey the large material in Canadian herbaria before publication of the account for the Flora of North America (Consaul and Aiken 2007). The Greenland and Canadian plants of P. concinna belong within Tzvelev's concept of P. x algidiformis, see below.

Steen and Elven: Tzvelev (1971) considered P. x algidiformis to be the hybrid between P. algida and P. concinna with 2n = 29 (error for 28). Subsequently, he (PAF proposal) reported it from the Arctic in Norway, European Russia, Siberia, the Russian Far East, and Greenland. Harry Smith described subsp. algidiformis as a local race of P. concinna in the Sylene-Helagsfjäll mountains in central Sweden, an area where both P. algida and 'typical' P. concinna are unknown. Subspecies algidiformis was never intended as a hybrid and cannot be one. However, Smith's concept and description of it was not very precise. Holmberg (1924) surveyed the 40 Scandinavian sheets that Smith had annotated as subsp. algidiformis. Of these, 33 sheets were misidentified P. algida and four sheets contained mixtures of the two species. The only acceptable sheets were those from the Sylene-Helagsfjäll mountains. They belong to an isolated population group of P. concinna, perhaps depauperate by inbreeding. These finds have later been confirmed as have Holmberg's finds of only a very few and sterile hybrids even in mixed stands (and, naturally, none within the geographical range of the original subsp. algidiformis). Phippsia algidiformis is therefore a synonym of P. concinna and not a hybrid or hybridogeneous species as proposed by Tzvelev.

Phippsia algida and P. concinna seem to be reproductivelly isolated as no transitional forms are convincingly documented. Steen et al. (2004) analysed the two morphologically, found more variation in P. concinna than in P. algida, and found the plants with the characters of Tzvelev's concept of P. x algidiformis to be within P. concinna morphologically and to be fertile (good fruit production). There is no factual support for Tzvelev's hypothesis of a widespread hybrid: "fertile ... In some Arctic regions ... found more commonly than the parental form" (Tzvelev 1976: 493). Plants with small, congested panicles and less purple coloration predominate in the Canadian and Greenland material and are quite common in Svalbard. These plants differ from the majority of Eurasian plants of P. concinna which often have comparatively large and very open panicles and much purplish pigments, but they belong in P. concinna. The morphological appearance of the Greenlandic and northern Canadian plants is the reason why P. concinna was so late in being recognized in North America. It might, possibly, be considered whether two races should be accepted in P. concinna: a subsp. concinna in Svalbard, Scandinavia, and elsewhere in northern Eurasia, and another in Canada, Greenland, and Svalbard. The name "algidiformis" is not available for the putative second race.

Higher Taxa