The species of Mentzelia (Loasaceae) in Mexico, Part 2: Mentzelia section Bartonia

Document Type


Publication Date



Background: Mentzelia (Loasaceae) is primarily distributed in western North America. The genus is classified into six monophyletic sections, among which species of section Bartonia are particularly poorly understood. Questions: What species of Mentzelia section Bartonia occur in Mexico? What are the species distribution ranges and what are their defining attributes? Study species: Mentzelia section Bartonia. Methods: Field, herbarium, distribution, and scanning electron microscopy studies were conducted to assess species diversity. Seed coat microsculpture patterns were evaluated to confirm species identities and understand their distributions throughout Mexico. Results: Six species from section Bartonia were recognized, with taxa distributed into either the Chihuahuan or Sonoran deserts. Mentzelia longiloba var. pinacatensis is the only Mexican endemic. Conclusions: Although this work comprehensively addressed the species of section Bartonia in Mexico, two groups will continue to present identification challenges: the M. longiloba and M. mexicana-M. saxicola complexes. Overlapping and variable characters will continue to complicate species identification in the M. longiloba complex, while the late-season loss of primary leaves will obscure species identification between M. mexicana and M. saxicola.