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Phylogeny of the Norwegian flora

Cite this dataset

Mienna, Ida M. et al. (2019). Phylogeny of the Norwegian flora [Dataset]. Dryad.


Abstract: Aim: In this study, we explored spatial patterns of phylogenetic diversity and endemism in the flora of Norway and tested hypothesized post-glacial environmental drivers of phylogenetic diversity, including temperature, precipitation, edaphic factors, and time since glacial retreat.

Location: Norway.

Taxon: Vascular plants (Trachaeophyta).

Methods: We produced a multi-locus Maximum Likelihood (ML) phylogeny using a combination of newly produced DNA sequences from herbarium specimens and sequences available from public repositories. We combined the phylogeny with species occurrence data to estimate phylogenetic diversity and phylogenetic endemism across Norway, using a spatial randomization to judge statistical significance. We used multiple-model inference to identify environmental variables that contributed the most to the patterns of phylogenetic diversity. Finally, we estimated phylogenetic turnover and used this to identify Norwegian plant assemblages in terms of composition and evolutionary history.

Results: Our ML phylogeny contained 87% of all currently described native Norwegian vascular plants. Assemblages were phylogenetically overdispersed in warmer and wetter regions of Norway, as well as in regions with a longer post-glacial history. In cold and dry regions, plant assemblages were phylogenetically clustered, and characterised by neo-endemism, while the mild and wet regions were characterised by both paleo- and neo-endemism. Phylogenetic diversity was positively correlated with summer temperature and habitat heterogeneity, and peaked in the southeast of Norway.

Main conclusions: Both contemporary ecological factors (climate and habitat heterogeneity), and post-glacial history seem to have shaped the phylogenetic structure of the flora of Norway. The flora in the far north of Norway appear to be a result of recent diversification while the coastal regions are assemblages of deeper lineages. Our results suggest that there is an evolutionary signal in the distribution of the Norwegian vascular flora.

Usage notes

The Norway native flora phylogeny (Newick format) relating 1238 study species.


Peder Sather Center for Advanced Study