Deep Time Project: A Comprehensive Phylogenetic Tree of Living and Fossil Angiosperms


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Figure 1. Phylogenetic relationships for all the main lineages of vascular plants from Pryer et al. (2001).

Figure 2. Phylogentic relatiships of land plants and their closest living relatives- the order Charales (stoneworts) from Karol et al. (2001).

Pryer et al. 2001

Figure 1. Phylogenetic relationships for all the main lineages of vascular plants inferred from a maximum-likelihood (ML) analysis of four combined data sets: chloroplast rbcL, atpB, rps4 and nuclear small-subunit rDNA. A separate unequally weighted maximum-parsimony (MP) analysis that included a morphological data set provides the same conclusions. Numbers at nodes and before the slash are ML bootstrap values „ 50%; MP bootstrap values „ 50% appear after the slash when these same nodes were supported in the MP analysis. A negative sign (-) indicates a node had less than 50% bootstrap support in one or the other analysis. The topology is rooted by all "bryophytes", hence relationships depicted among them are arbitrary. Branches leading to the three monophyletic clades of vascular plants (lycophytes, seed plants, and horsetails+ferns) are drawn medium thick. The branch supporting the Euphyllophytina, with horsetails+ferns as sister group to seed plants, is the thickest. Wiggled lines (at straight arrows) indicate three areas of conflict between the ML and MP analyses. Branch lengths are proportional to number of substitutions/site (scale bar) (Modified from Pryer et al., 2001).

Figure 2. Molecular phylogenetic analysis shows that the order Charales (stoneworts) is the closest living relatives of land plants, with the Coleochaetales sister to the land plant/Charales lineage. Charophytes (Order Charales) are a group of submerged plants found in aquatic habitats all over the world (Karol et al. 2001).


Pryer, K.M., H. Schneider, A.R. Smith, R. Cranfill, P.G. Wolf, J.S. Hunt, and S.D. Sipes. 2001. Horsetails and ferns are a monophyletic group and the closest living relatives to seed plants. Nature 409: 618-622.

Karol, K.G., R.M. McCourt, M.T. Cimino, and C.F. Delwiche. 2001. The Closest Living Relatives of Land Plants. Science 294: 2351-2353.

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