Phyllanthus rangachariarii Murugan, Kabeer & G.V.S.Murthy submission AS27 December 22: 6 high res. images.
Here’s a new addition to eFloraofIndia website.
Phyllanthus rangachariarii Murugan, Kabeer & G.V.S.Murthy
Family – Phyllanthaceae
This rare species is narrow endemic to Agasthyamala Biosphere Reserve, Tamil Nadu
Photographed in Kanyakumari district, Tamil Nadu
In November 2022

I think this is the first field photographs of this rare endemic.

Thanks …, yes definitely these are the first and only photographic evidence of this rare endemic Phyllanthus species.

I am sorry for misguiding you!
This is not at all P. rangachariarii. Just now I noticed that the male sepals are 6. 
The characters of the plant point to very close alliance to Phyllanthus clarkei in almost all characters. But I have some doubts because P. clarkei in not known from peninsular India so far and the leaves here are stiffly coriaceous. The glands in male flowers appear to be 6 instead of 3.
So, please study your plant very carefully once again and compare with P. clarkei (now called Cathetus clarkei).

Even closer to P. gardnerianus but leaves sessile and thickly coriaceous.

Thanks for pointing the mistake in id. You are absolutely correct it can’t be Phyllanthus rangachariarii owing to the characters you mentioned i.e. 6 perianth and glands in male flowers instead of 4 in P. rangachariarii). Additionally my plant is much smaller is height not taller than 2 feets while P. rangachariarii is a much bigger shrub upto 2 metre tall.
I also checked type material images available on BSI virtual herbarium, confirming the same.

This must be Phyllanthus narayanswamii Gamble
Under shrub upto 2 metre tall. Leaves alternative,sessile, elliptic coriaceous with thickened recurved margins. Perianth lobes 6 with 6 small glands in male flowers. Fruit capsule globose with verrucose glands. All these characters are matching with Phyllanthus narayanswamii Gamble
So our plant is Phyllanthus narayanswamii Gamble, which is already reported from the Agasthyamala Biosphere Reserve where I have clicked this plant.
… I hope the identity is correct now!

Syn. of  Phyllanthus virgatus G.Forst. ? ? Looks different from images at !
Now , Cathetus virgatus (G.Forst.) R.W.Bouman ??
Please compare with Phyllanthus macraei Müll.Arg. . Now: Cathetus rheedei (Wight) R.W.Bouman

Someone recently united P. narayanswamii under P. virgatus but kept P. gardnerianus distinct. Bouman et al. (2022) maintained all as distinct. I am fully confused here. P. virgatus is a Pacific species while P. simplex is Asian. Someone recently informed me that P. narayanswsmii is distinct from P. gardnerianus by habit, habitat and DNA data.
My studies based on specimens and images indicate that narayanswamii and gardnerianus should be merged but considering the confusions, I will not go for any taxonomic changes. Let someone clarify these 3 species with field data combined with DNA studies.

Thanks for your valuable comments … I agree with your views and meanwhile someone clarify these 3 species based on field data combined with DNA/molecular studies, … in my opinion we should keep it as a separate species on our website under page Phyllanthus narayanswamii Gamble.
Please note than Verwijs et al. 2019 while synonymizing  P. narayanswamii  under P. virgatus have also mentioned some difference “The nervature of the leaves on the type of P. narayanswamii differs a little bit from other specimens of P. virgatus in the prominent nervature on the lower side of the leaf blade”. Also it is notable that when the publication of Verwijs et al. came in October 2019, at around same time (just two months before in August) came another publication in Phytotaxa entitled “Taxonomic and habitat update to Phyllanthus narayanswamii (Phyllanthaceae): an endemic and endangered species from southern India” which is not referred in the publication of Verwijs et al. because as I mentioned earlier they got published round same time. So before this publication only little data was available about P. narayanswamii with no any images, so who knows if the publication on P. narayanswamii taxonomic and habitat update would have came earlier, Verwijs et al. may have retained the distinct species status of P. narayanswamii as they retained the status of P. gardnerianus and P. tararae. They have also mentioned in their paper abstract that “The species complex around Phyllanthus virgatus remains taxonomically difficult” and we are suffering from the same thing here…

I feel it is different from Phyllanthus narayanswamii as per Notes_on_Phyllanthus_narayanaswamii_Gamble Euphorbiaceae_and_Dimeria_lawsonii_Hookf_Fischer Poaceae_-_from_the_state_of_Tamil_Nadu
I find it closer to images of Phyllanthus macraei as per GBIF specimen and images at
Pl. check.

Two persons, one from Delhi University and the other from IISC Bangalore had contacted me for initial identifications of their specimens for initiating molecular studies. Unfortunately none of them have published their findings yet. One person published a new species, P. palakondensis. The other person from Delhi shared me images from three localities of TN and AP and asked me to name them. I found that the supposed morphological differences between P. gardnerianus and P. narayanswamii are not standing good due to presence of intermediate plants (images). However, P. simplex stands separate for its much narrower and thinner leaves and presence of bisexual cymules, absent in the other two.
Meanwhile Bouman et al. (2022) recognized these species as distinct under the genus Cathetus. They had not studied DNA samples of P. narayanswamii.
In conclusion, in my opinion, morphologically P. naraynswamii is same as P. gardnerianus but different from P. simplex.
I hope molecular data and field observations will eventually clarify the situation.

What about its id as Phyllanthus macraei as per GBIF specimen and images at ?

This is not at all P. macraei.

The image marked as A is Phyllanthus macraei Mull.Arg., now called Cathetus rheedei (Wight) R.W. Bouman.
The image marked as B is Phyllanthus stylosus Griff. (syn. P. griffithii Mull.Arg.), now known as Cathetus stylosus (Griff.) R.W. Bouman
The image marked as C is Phyllanthus gageanus (Gamble) M.Mohanan, now known as Nymphanthus gageanus (Gamble) R.W. Bouman ex Chakrab. & N.P. Balakr.
The image marked as D is the lectotype of Phyllanthus roeperianus Wall. ex Mull.Arg., now known as Cathetus roeperianus (Wall. ex Mull.Arg.) Chakrab. & N.P. Balakr.
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It still seems a mystery to me.

This is only Phyllanthus narayanswamii Gamble, there should not be any doubts about its identity. The only doubt we have is about its status as a species (as discussed with …) as it is close to P. gardnerianus and P. simplex but this can be only resolved after molecular studies.
There is absolutely no chances of my plant being P. macraei. I think you may be are confused because of the misidentified plant images posted on Flora of Peninsular India Website. If you will closely check with the gbif specimens its perfectly matching along with illustration showing thickened recurved leaf margins on the herbarium sheet

What do you say?
Why images posted by … look so thick.
Why images of Phyllanthus narayanswamii look different as per Notes_on_Phyllanthus_narayanaswamii_Gamble Euphorbiaceae_and_Dimeria_lawsonii_Hookf_Fischer Poaceae_-_from_the_state_of_Tamil_Nadu

Images from looks different compared to … images !

I think … may be able to resolve this issue.

May be a new species in the making.

That would be a great news …


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