acta satech Journal of the Life & Physical Sciences Babcock

Ecobiogeographic studies on the genus Ipomoea L. (Convolvulaceae) in Nigeria
K.O. Ogunwenmo & R. E. Ugborogho
Department of Cell Biology and Genetics, Faculty of Science, University of Lagos, Akoka-Yaba, Lagos. Nigeria
Received June 3rd, 2003, revised version received February 4th, 2004, accepted February 18th, 2004

Herbarium and field studies of Ipomoea in Nigeria were carried out to determine species composition, adaptability and distribution pattern. Four taxa (11%) traversed different climatic and vegetation zones in both north and south, 9 taxa (24%) were adapted to the savanna-north while 13 taxa (34%) belonged to the forest-south. 7 taxa (18%) occurred in the forest-savanna mosaic regional transition zone while 5 taxa (13%) were found in both the forest and the savanna climatic zones. Among these, 2 each are restricted to the mangrove Atlantic coastal beaches and dunes of the forest-south (I. pes-caprae ssp. Brasiliensis and I. stolonifera) and the montane Jos and Mambilla plateau temperate-like climate of the regional transition zone (I. tenuirostris and I. verbascoidea). Three other taxa were cultivated mainly as ornamental (I. carnea ssp. Fistulosa and I. intrapilosa) and food crop (I. batatas) and rarely found in the wild. The bioclimatic factors that influenced the distribution of the taxa are discussed. Distribution maps were constructed for the wild occurring species. Restricted and threatened species were identified. Overall, in Nigeria, Ipomoea is represented by 34 species distributed in 38 taxa excluding two doubtfully persisting species (I. alpine and I. sepiaria).
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