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Glandularia bipinnatifida 2004-08-22.jpg
Glandularia bipinnatifida
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Verbenaceae
Genus: Glandularia
Type species
Glandularia carolinensis
Glandularia canadensis, a member of the northern lineage. Its chloroplasts derive from a South American Verbena

Glandularia, common name mock vervain or mock verbena, is a genus of annual and perennial herbaceous flowering plants in the family Verbenaceae. They are native to the Americas.

Glandularia species are closely related to the true vervains[1] and sometimes still included with them in Verbena. Horizontal chloroplast transfer occurred at least twice and possibly three times between these genera, which are otherwise too distinct to warrant unification. The discovery of the signal in the chloroplast genome was announced in 2008 by researchers from the University of Washington. Somehow, chloroplasts from V. orcuttiana, swamp verbena (V. hastata) or a close relative of these had admixed into the G. bipinnatifida genome. Although hybridization runs rampant in the true and mock vervains – the ancestors of the well-known garden vervain are quite obscure – it does not seem to have been the cause of the cross-species gene transfer.[2]

In addition, the researchers discovered the signal of one more transfer event. This had introduced chloroplasts from an ancestral member of the Verbena lineage nowadays found in South America into Glandularia. Although all members of the present genus can be distinguished to have a chromosome count of five, the South American species are diploid, while polyploid hybrid Glandularia are very widespread from northern Central America northwards. The second genetic introgression must have occurred before the genus spread north, as species with the Verbena-like chloroplasts are found all over the Americas. Since the new chloroplast genes replaced the old ones, it may be that the possibly hybridogenic G. bipinnatifida actually underwent horizontal chloroplast transfer twice in its evolutionary history.[2]


The following species are recognised by The Plant List:[3]


  1. ^ Silvia M. Botta, Susana Martinez & Maria E. Mulgura de Romero (1995). "Novedades nomenclaturales en Verbenaceae" [Nomenclatural novelties in Verbenaceae]. Hickenia. 2: 127–128. Archived from the original on 2015-10-02. 
  2. ^ a b Yao-Wu Yuan & Richard G. Olmstead (2008). "A species-level phylogenetic study of the Verbena complex (Verbenaceae) indicates two independent intergeneric chloroplast transfers". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 48 (1): 23–33. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2008.04.004. PMID 18495498. 
  3. ^ "Glandularia". The Plant List. Retrieved 16 February 2016. 

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