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Proceedings of the International Plant Propagator's Society

Vol. 42

Propagation of the Temperate Woody Flora of Mexico

Rob Nicholson, John Fairey, Carl Schoenfeld, Melvin Shemluck and Eduardo Estrada

pp: 442-446

The floristic affinities between the northeastern U.S. and northeast Asia have been known and studied by botanists for over 100 years. Less well explored is what affinities the flora of northeastern Mexico has to these two regions. Many of the temperate woody genera of Mexico are familiar, including Cornus, Cercis, and Ostrya. It is logical to assume that most were recent arrivals, having migrated southward during the Pleistocene glaciations. However, recent studies of fossil pollens in coal deposits in Veracruz State detected pollen of Abies, Picea, Liquidambar, Fagus, Quercus, Ulmus, Juglans, Populus, Alnus, and Celtis. As these deposits were dated to the Middle Miocene we can see that temperate elements in Mexico predate the glacial epoch by 18 million years. This indicates a more complex relationship between the floras of Mexico and other regions than previously thought. It is accurate to think of this flora not only as recent disjunctions but as a separate and distinct flora with a

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