8 December 2023

An updated floristic map of the world


Floristic regions reflect the geographic organization of floras and provide essential tools for biological studies. Previous global floristic regions are generally based on floristic endemism, lacking a phylogenetic consideration that captures floristic evolution. Moreover, the contribution of tectonic dynamics and historical and current climate to the division of floristic regions remains unknown. Here, by integrating global distributions and a phylogeny of 12,664 angiosperm genera, we update global floristic regions and explore their temporal changes. Eight floristic realms and 16 nested sub-realms are identified. The previously-defined Holarctic, Neotropical and Australian realms are recognized, but Paleotropical, Antarctic and Cape realms are not. Most realms have formed since Paleogene. Geographic isolation induced by plate tectonics dominates the formation of floristic realms, while current/historical climate has little contribution. Our study demonstrates the necessity of integrating distributions and phylogenies in regionalizing floristic realms and the interplay of macroevolutionary and paleogeographic processes in shaping regional floras.


Liu, Y., Xu, X., Dimitrov, D., Pellissier, L., Borregaard, M.K., Shresrha, N., Su, X., Luo, A., Zimmermann, N.E., Rahbek, C. & Wang, Z. An updated floristic map of the world. Nat Commun 14, 2990 (2023)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-023-38375-y