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Chamaebatiaria and Chamaebatia, two characteristic genera of the Californian floristic province, are traditionally placed in different subfamilies of Rosaceae , Spiraeoideae and Rosoideae, respectively. Analysis of the foliar and reproductive characters of the extant species of these genera indicates that the two genera could be closely related and the assignment of Chamaebatia to Rosoideae invalid. Fossil leaves of lineages of both genera occur in the Paleogene montane floras of the Rocky Mountain region and provide evidence that the two lineages diverged from a common ancestor in the Eocene. The common ancestor probably was adapted to sunny habitats in mesic coniferous forest, and, during the post-Eocene, the two lineages were able to adapt to progressively drier climates. A third extant genus, the east Asian Sorbaria, also appears to be closely related to the California genera and to have been derived from the same common ancestor. New taxa and combinations proposed are: St onebergia columbiana. n. gen. and n. sp.; Salmonensea prefoliolosa (R. W. Br.), n. gen. and n. comb.; Stockeya creedensis (R. W. Br.), n. gen. and n. comb.; Stockeya montana, n. sp.; and Sorbaria wahrhaftigii, n. sp.

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© 1988 Jack A. Wolfe and Wesley Wehr

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