David Tschelidse
Botanical-geographic questions of the family Polygonaceae.
Tbilisi / Georgia 2005


The present study deals with botanical-geographic issues of the family Polygonaceae (along with family Illecebraceae)
(mainly by example of Eurasian representatives).

The historical principles of the evolution of Polygonaceae are considered:
migration from Mediterranean area to East Asia, Pleistocene history of Koenigia islandica and Herniaria caucasica.
We briefly touch the presence of Polygonaceae on American continent and
introduce Polygonaceae/Illecebraceae from "Flora of Georgia".

According to data on morphology, anatomy, caryology, biochemistry and historical geology we conclude
that the family Polygonaceae is related to the origin and initial stages of the development of angiosperms,
while genus Koenigia takes one of the leading positions in the angiosperm phylogenetic system.
We consider that Koenigia/Herniaria flower type can be regarded as an ancestor form of dichlamydeous
as well as homochlamydeous plants and monocotyledons with reduced perianth.

A phylogenetic system of Polygonaceae is proposed in the paper.
We suggest the following changes in the nomenclature:
the genus Polygonum s.str. section Cephalophilon Meisn. is raised to the rank of the genus
Cephalophilon (Meisn.). Tschelidse stat. nov.;
the section Komaroviella Vassil. is raised to the rank of the genus Komaroviella (Vassil.) Tschelidse stat. nov.;
which consists of a single species Komaroviella mariae (Vassil.) Tschelidse comb. nov.;
Section Knorringia Czuk. is elevated to the rank of the genus Knorringia (Czuk.) Tschelidse stat. nov.