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Consolea Lem. in Rev. Hort. (Paris) 1862: 174. 1862 sec. Majure & al. 20211 wfo-4000009191
      Nametype: Consolea spinosissima (Mill.) Lem.
  • 1. Majure, L.C., D.Barrios, Díaz, E., Zumwalde, B.A., Testo, W. & Negrón-Ortíz, V. 2021: Pleistocene aridification underlies the evolutionary history of the Caribbean endemic, insular, giant Consolea (Opuntioideae). – American Journal of Botany 108(2): 200-215. 10.1002/ajb2.1610


Plastid and nuclear ITS data so far provided inconclusive results for the placement of Consolea and its separation from Opuntia. Consolea was found to be imbedded in Opuntia by Griffith & Porter (2009) based on combined nuclear and plastid data. The plastid and nuclear data of Majure & al. (2012) supported the monophyly but were incongruent regarding the placement of Consolea: while plastid data resolved Consolea outside of Opuntia (BS=53%), nuclear ITS data resolve Consolea within Opuntia (BS=75%), yet both these placements receive only weak support. Support for a placement outside of Opuntia increased to 81% BS when only diploids were included in a combined nuclear and plastid analysis.
Majure & al. (2012) pointed out that evolution in Opuntia and allies involves hybridization and allopolyploidization and that Consolea might be of allopolyploid origin, as indicated by the incongruent plastid and nuclear trees. Nevertheless, Majure & al. (2012) and Majure & Puente (2014) argue for recognizing Consolea as a genus distinct from Opuntia because of good support for its monophyly, the placement by combined plastid and nuclear data outside of Opuntia and unique morphological characteristics. More recent topologies based on phylogenomic datasets and broader taxon sampling resolve Consolea as sister to the rest of Opuntieae (Köhler & al. 2020, Majure & al. in revision). Majure & al. (in revision) used plastome data to reveal species relationships in the clade. Barrios & al. (2019) and Majure & Clase (2018) provided updated distribution information for the species on Cuba and Hispaniola.A,B,C,D,E,F,G


Revised by Lucas C. Majure


A. Barrios, D., Díaz, E. & Majure, L. 2019: Exploraciones botánicas a poblaciones de Consolea (Cactaceae) en Cuba: estado de conservación y principales amenazas. – Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas 13: 217-228.
B. Griffith, M.P. & Porter, J.M. 2009: Phylogeny of Opuntioideae (Cactaceae). – International Journal of Plant Sciences 170(1): 107-116.
C. Köhler, M., Reginato, M., Souza-Chies, T.T. & Majure, L.C. 2020: Insights into chloroplast genome evolution across Opuntioideae (Cactaceae) reveals robust yet sometimes conflicting phylogenetic topologies. – Frontiers in Plant Science 11.
D. Majure, L.C. & Clase, T. 2018: Uso del nombre Consolea microcarpa versus Consolea picardae, una especie endémica de La Española. – Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas 12: 75-80
E. Majure, L.C. & R.Puente 2014: Phylogenetic relationships and morphological evolution in Opuntia s. str. and closely related members of tribe Opuntieae. – Succulent Plant Research 8: 9-30
F. Majure, L.C. 2021: Revisions of Cochemiea, Consolea, Coryphantha, Cylindropuntia, Cumarinia, Grusonia, Kroenleinia, Leptocereus, Melocactus, Micropuntia, Opuntia. – In: Korotkova N. & al., Cactaceae at – a dynamic online species-level taxonomic backbone for the family. – Willdenowia 51: 251-270.
G. Majure, L.C., Puente, R., Griffith, M.P., Judd, W.S., Soltis, P.S. & Soltis, D.E. 2012: Phylogeny of Opuntia s.s. (Cactaceae): Clade delineation, geographic origins, and reticulate evolution. – American Journal of Botany 99(5): 847-864.