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Journal of Botany
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 197696, 12 pages
Research Article

A Phylogenetic Analysis of Salix (Salicaceae) Based on matK and Ribosomal DNA Sequence Data

1Department of Biology, Chemistry, and Mathematics, University of Montevallo, Montevallo, AL 35115-6480, USA
2Department of Math and Science, San Jose City College, San Jose, CA 95128-2723, USA
3Department of Biology, University of Joensuu, 80101 Joensuu, Finland
4Department of Forest Resources, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID 83844-1133, USA

Received 7 September 2010; Accepted 16 November 2010

Academic Editor: Johann Greilhuber

Copyright © 2010 T. M. Hardig et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The genus Salix has proven a fertile taxon for a host of evolutionary and ecological studies, yet much work remains in the development of a definitive phylogenetic context for those studies. We performed phylogenetic analyses, using both maximum likelihood and maximum parsimony techniques, of chloroplast-encoded matK and nuclear-encoded ribosomal DNA (rDNA) gene sequences, gathered from specimens deemed representative of the existing subgeneric classification, with the objective of identifying and elaborating the phylogenetic relationships within Salix. Comparisons between the two phylogenetic hypotheses indicate a high degree of polyphyly in the matK-based phylogeny. This we attribute to the effects of hybridization, introgression, and lineage sorting. Comparisons with previous molecule-based phylogenetic hypotheses indicate a fair degree of congruence and all are unanimous in placing Chosenia arbutifolia within the genus Salix. The phylogenetic analysis of our ITS data set has produced results that generally support the most-recent infrageneric classification.