The genus Hoya in Polynesia

The genus Hoya in Polynesia

The genus Hoya is distributed in many parts of Asia to Australia and Oceania, it contains a largely unknown number of species, unknown because there are tremendous numbers of taxa that were and unfortunately still are described – most of them by a certain single person.

Here is a small account of them.:

Hoya faoensis Kloppenb. & Siar
Hoya fetuana Kloppenb.
Hoya fitoensis Kloppenb.
Hoya lanoto’oensis Kloppenb.
Hoya mata-ole-afiensis Kloppenb.
Hoya nuuuliensis Kloppenb. & Siar
Hoya ofuensis Kloppenb.
Hoya savaiiensis Kloppenb.
Hoya savaiiensis ssp. falealupoensis Kloppenb.
Hoya seanwhistleriana Kloppenb.
Hoya tiatuilaensis Kloppenb.
Hoya x tuafanua Whistler & Kloppenb.
Hoya whistleri Kloppenb.

All of these ‘taxa’ are from Samoa alone, and there are probably more to come.

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But what is the problem?

Well, some of these plants were obviously described from cultivated material, and often even the slightest differences were used to describe the material as a new species.

So, actually no one really knows at this time how many true species exist, and this doesn’t only aply to Samoa.

But this ain’t the only problem!

The abovementioned ‘autor’ described Hoya x tuafanua in 2002 (Fraterna 15(3): 13. 2002), and then used exactly the same plant material in 2015 to describe another species, Hoya seanwhistleriana (Hoya New 4(2): 10-16. 2015).

What the heck is going on here?

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Finally, just for ‘fun’, a full list of all Hoya taxa described from within Polynesia, as far as I know them.:

Hoya angustifolia J. Traill
Hoya artwhistlerii Kloppenb.
Hoya attenuata Christoph.
Hoya australis R. Br. ex Traill
Hoya australis ssp. tenuipes (K. D. Hill) P. I. Forst. & Liddle
Hoya betchei (Schltr.) Whistler
Hoya bicarinata A. Gray
Hoya billardieri Decne.
Hoya chlorantha Rech.
Hoya chlorantha var. tutuilensis (Chr.) Whistler
Hoya corollamarginata Kloppenb.
Hoya corollamarginata ssp. magiagiensis Kloppenb.
Hoya corollamarginata ssp. upoluensis Kloppenb.
Hoya crassior Hochr.
Hoya dalrympliana F. Muell.
Hoya desvoeuxensis T. Green & Kloppenb.
Hoya diptera Seem.
Hoya faoensis Kloppenb. & Siar
Hoya fetuana Kloppenb.
Hoya fetuana ssp. sigaeleensis Kloppenb.
Hoya fetuana ssp. tutuilensis Kloppenb.
Hoya filiformis Rech.
Hoya fitoensis Kloppenb.
Hoya intermedia A. C. Sm.
Hoya lanataiensis Kloppenb.
Hoya lanoto’oensis Kloppenb.
Hoya luatekensis Kloppenb.
Hoya mata-ole-afiensis Kloppenb.
Hoya matavanuensis Kloppenb.
Hoya megalantha Turrill
Hoya nuuuliensis Kloppenb. & Siar
Hoya obscurinervia Merr.
Hoya ofuensis Kloppenb.
Hoya oligotricha ssp. tenuipes K. D. Hill
Hoya olosegaensis Kloppenb.
Hoya patameaensis Kloppenb.
Hoya pilosa Seem.
Hoya pottsii J. Traill
Hoya pottsii var. angustifolia (J. Traill) Tsiang & P. T. Li
Hoya pubescens Reinecke
Hoya pycnophylla Rech.
Hoya samoaalbiflora Kloppenb.
Hoya samoensis Seem.
Hoya samoensis ssp. savai’iensis Kloppenb.
Hoya savaiiensis Kloppenb.
Hoya savaiiensis ssp. falealupoensis Kloppenb.
Hoya seanwhistleriana Kloppenb.
Hoya smithii Kloppenb.
Hoya tamaleaaea Kloppenb.
Hoya tauensis Kloppenb.
Hoya tiatuilaensis Kloppenb.
Hoya trinervis J. Traill
Hoya x tuafanua Whistler & Kloppenb.
Hoya uafatoensis Kloppenb.
Hoya upoluensis Reinecke
Hoya upoluensis var. minor Rech.
Hoya vitiensis Turrill
Hoya whistleri Kloppenb.
Hoya whistleri ssp. faleuluensis Kloppenb.

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References:

[1] Dale Kloppenburg: Samoan Hoya Species I-III. 2014
[2] Dale Kloppenburg: Hoya New 5(1): 1-64. 2015

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edited: 12.02.2017

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Hoya pottsii J. Traill

Hoya pottsii

Distribution:

Samoa: Ofu, Olosega, Ta’u, Tutuila
Tonga: ‘Eua

local names:

fue sa – Samoa
fue selela – Samoa

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The actual Hoya pottsii is obviously a Chinese endemic, so, does not occur anywhere else, the Samoan and the Tongan material thus cannot represent the same species.

The species, however, is mentioned in 1996 as being native to the island of ‘Eua, Tonga, and in 2006 as being native to American Samoa. [1][2]

Such material, originally identified as Hoya pottsii, was subsequently described as a new species, Hoya tiatuilaensis Kloppenb. in 2013. [3]

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The true status of the plants (not being Hoya australis R. Br. ex Traill) occurring on Ofu, Olosega, Ta’u, Tutuila, and ‘Eua are still to be clarified.

The depiction below shows the true Chinese Hoya pottsii.

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References:

[1] Donald R. Drake; Timothy J. Motley; W. Arthur Whistler; Clyde T. Imada: Rain forest vegetation of ‘Eua Island, Kingdom of Tonga. New Zealand Journal of Botany 34: 65-77. 1996
[2] Diane Ragone; David H. Lorence: Botanical and ethnobotanical inventories of the National Park of American Samoa.  Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit Technical Report 170. University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Department of Botany. Honolulu, HI. 91 pg. 2006
[3] Dale Kloppenburg: Hoya New 1(2): 1-30. 2013

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hoya-pottsii-jt

Depiction from: ‘James Traill: Accounts and Descriptions of the several Plants belonging to the Genus Hoya, which are cultivated in the Garden of the Horticultural Society at Chiswick. Transactions of the Royal Horticultural Society of London 7: 16-30. 1830’

(This image is in the public domain.)

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edited: 17.02.2017