Gladiolus mariae (Iridaceae), a new species from fire-free shrubland in the Kounounkan Massif, Guinea
van de Burgt, Xander
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Gladiolus mariae Burgt (Iridaceae), a new species from Guinea, West Africa, is described and illustrated. The new species is placed in Gladiolus sect. Decorati Goldblatt and compared with the nine species already known from that section. Flowering plants stand 28–160 cm high with 1–6 bright orange flowers, opening one at a time. The ecology of the new species is discussed in detail, and a description of the vegetation in the region is provided. Gladiolus mariae is at present known only from two uninhabited sandstone table mountains in the Kounounkan Massif, Forécariah Prefecture. About 210 plants were found, on rocky soils at altitudes of 650–1100 m. The majority of plants, about 160, were found in fire-free shrubland, in five patches of 1–4 ha each, dominated by fire-sensitive plant species, but grasses are infrequent. Gladiolus mariae seems vulnerable to grassland fires. The area of occupancy is 28 km2. The species is assessed to the IUCN category Endangered.Citation: Burgt X. M. van der, Konomou G., Haba P. M. & Magassouba S. 2019: Gladiolus mariae (Iridaceae), a new species from fire-free shrubland in the Kounounkan Massif, Guinea. – Willdenowia 49: 117–126. doi: https://doi.org/10.3372/wi.49.49112Version of record first published online on 17 April 2019 ahead of inclusion in April 2019 issue.