Two species of Haskinsia Grierson & Banks (Lycopsida) from the Middle Devonian of Xinjiang, China, and consideration of their palaeogeographical significance




Two species of the Devonian herbaceous lycopsid Haskinsia Grierson & Banks, H. hastata Berry & Edwards and H. sagittata Edwards & Benedetto, are reported from the Hujiersite Formation (Givetian–Middle Devonian), Xinjiang, north-west China. Both species were first described from Venezuela. Haskinsia hastata from Xinjiang has hastate leaves with toothed margins, and a pair of basal narrow lateral segments which curve distally. It is assigned to a new subspecies because of the toothed margins which cannot be demonstrated in Venezuelan material. The scar of the sporangium stalk is observed for the first time in specimens of H. sagittata, on the leaves of which a possible ligule structure is also shown. On the basis of our observations on both Xinjiang and Venezuelan specimens, the diagnosis of Haskinsia is enlarged to accommodate plants whose lamina has entire or toothed margins. The palaeophytogeography of the genus, otherwise known from South and North America, is discussed. © 2008 The Linnean Society of London, Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 2008, 157, 633–644.