Stelis, one of the largest genera within Pleurothallidinae, was recently recircumscribed to include a few hundred more species, most of which had previously been assigned to Pleurothallis. Here, a new phylogenetic analysis of Stelis and closely related genera based on DNA sequences from nuclear ITS and chloroplast matK, based on a much larger sample, is presented; it includes more than 100 species assigned to Stelis and covers all proposed groupings within the genus, many of which have not previously been represented. Clades are proposed to enable easier discussion of groups of closely related species; each clade is characterized morphologically, ecologically, and geographically to explain the evidence found in the molecular analysis. Discussion of the evolutionary trends of character states found in the genus in its broad sense is given. The current taxonomy of the group is given and the possible taxonomical implications of the findings presented here are discussed.
- consensus networks