Ceratozamia sabatoi Vovides & Vázq. Torres. Novon 3 (4): 502-504. 1993.

Martinez-Dominguez, Lili, Nicolalde-Morejon, Fernando, Vergara-Silva, Francisco & Stevenson, Dennis Wm., 2018, Taxonomic review of Ceratozamia (Zamiaceae) in the Sierra Madre Oriental, Mexico, PhytoKeys 100, pp. 91-124: 110

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Ceratozamia sabatoi Vovides & Vázq. Torres. Novon 3 (4): 502-504. 1993.


11. Ceratozamia sabatoi Vovides & Vázq. Torres. Novon 3 (4): 502-504. 1993.  Figures 2B, 3D, 6A, 7A


MEXICO. Querétaro: San Joaquín, 15 Apr. 1991, A. P. Vovides 1205 (holotype: XAL).


Stem epigeous, erect and decumbent, 8-30 cm in length, 20-35 cm in diameter. Cataphylls persistent, densely tomentose at emergence, reddish-brown and partially tomentose at maturity, triangular, apex acuminate, 3-4.5 × 2-3.5 cm at base. Leaves 3-40, descending, 60-129 cm, dark brown at emergence, whitish-grey pubescence, glabrous at maturity. Petiole terete, straight, 20-60 cm, armed with short and thin prickles, greenish-brown in adult leaves. Rachis terete, straight, 40-92 cm, armed with prickles, brown in adult leaves. Leaflets 26-54, linear, planar and abaxially curved, basally falcate, papyraceous, flat, opposite to subopposite, plane, green, adaxial and abaxial side glabrous, acuminate apex, symmetric apex, attenuate at base, with conspicuous and light green veins; median leaflets 13-32 × 0.6-1.5 cm, 0.5-1.5 cm between leaflets; articulations brown, 0.3-0.7 cm wide. Polliniferous strobilus solitary, cylindrical, erect, 11-18 cm in length, 3.5-4.8 cm in diameter, greenish-yellow at emergence, greenish-yellow with blackish pubescence at maturity; peduncle tomentose, reddish-brown to brown, 7-10.5 cm in length, 1.1-1.9 cm in diameter; microsporophylls 1-1.9 × 1-1.4 cm, recurved distal face. Ovuliferous strobilus solitary, cylindrical, erect, 15.5-18 cm in length, 6-8.5 cm in diameter, yellowish-green with brown pubescence at emergence, blue green with blackish trichomes at maturity, apiculate apex; peduncle tomentose, brown, 4-7 cm in length, 1.2-1.8 cm in diameter; megasporophylls 98-108, 2.3 –2.5× 2-3 cm, truncate distal face, right angle between horns. Seeds ovoid, sarcotesta whitish-red when immature, light brown at maturity, 1.2-2 cm in length, 1.2-1.5 cm in diameter.

Distribution and habitat.

Endemic to Mexico and known from the states of Querétaro and Hidalgo, at 1,600-1,900 m in the Sierra Gorda mountain range of Querétaro, along the mountain range northwest of Hidalgo (Fig. 9). It inhabits the understorey herbaceous layer of the transition zone between oak forest and cloud forest.


The specific epithet honours the late Sergio Sabato, distinguished professor at the University of Naples Federico II, Italia, for his contributions to knowledge of the biology and systematics of cycads, particularly in the Neotropics.

Distinguishing features.

Leaflets lanceolate, papyraceous, symmetric apex and with brown articulations; pollen strobilus greenish-yellow with blackish pubescence at maturity and microsporophylls with recurved distal face (Fig. 6A).

Specimens examined.

MEXICO. Hidalgo: Zimapán, R. Contreras-Medina 55, 56 (XAL), R. Fernandez-Nava 6561 (MEXU, MO, XAL). Querétaro: Cadereyta de Montes, A. P. Vovides 1193, 1196-1199, 1201, 1205 (XAL), A. P. Vovides et al. 1203 (MEXU, XAL), F. Nicolalde-Morejón et al. 2169, 2170 (CIB), L. Martínez-Domínguez et al. 313-343 (CIB), O. V. Zirahuen 128014 (IEB), R. Fernandez-Nava s/n (QMEX), R. Zirahuén-Ortega V. 328 (MEXU); Landa de Matamoros, T. W. Walters 2001-05-A, B (XAL); Pinal de Amoles, F. Nicolalde-Morejón et al. 2171, 2172 (CIB), L. Martínez-Domínguez et al. 344-372 (CIB), Rzedowski s/n (XAL).