National Academy Science Letters

, Volume 42, Issue 2, pp 185–189 | Cite as

Angiosperm Phylogeny Group Classification in Fourth Iteration: Its Future Impact in India

  • Dharmendra Singh RawatEmail author
  • Bhupendra Singh Bhandari
News/Views and Comments


The communication discusses major changes in the new version of APG classification and its adoption in India. APG IV has further stabilized with addition of 2 informal groups, 5 new orders, 10 new families, re-circumscription of 20 earlier families and reduction in number of unplaced taxa. A comparison of APG versions with 4 recent individual classifications proves it more stable. A circle-in-circle diagram and a simplified cladogram of the classification are devised to make it easy to understand. Adoption of APG IV is visible in the world but Indian taxonomic institutions are sceptical for its changing nature. In a country where Linnaean Taxonomy is dominant, species richness is high, flora is incompletely explored and published, adoption of APG classification in flora or herbaria will jeopardize the progress. It seems that morphological taxonomy will remain dominant and APG IV will be mainly a topic of classroom teaching in India.


Angiosperms APG IV Clades Cladistic classification Families Orders Taxonomy 


  1. 1.
    APG (1998) An ordinal classification for the families of flowering plants. Ann Missouri Bot Gard 85:531–553CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    APG II (2003) An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants. Bot J Linn Soc 141:399–436CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    APG III (2009) An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III. Bot J Linn Soc 161:105–121CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    APG IV (2016) An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG IV. Bot J Linn Soc 181:1–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Brummitt RK (2014) Taxonomy versus cladonomy in Dicot families. Ann Missouri Bot Gard 100:89–99CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Thorne RF (2007) An updated classification of class Magnoliopsida (“Angiosperm”). Bot Rev 73:67–182CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Takhtajan A (2009) Flowering plants, II edn. Springer, Berlin, p 871CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Reveal JL (2012) An outline of a classification scheme for extant flowering plants. Phytoneuron 37:1–221Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Shipunov AB (2016) Systema Angiospermarum version 5.19. Published on internet at Accessed 26 July 2016
  10. 10.
    Vasudeva Rao MK, Chakrabarty T (1985) Nicobariodendron Vasud. & T. Chakrab. (Celastraceae)—a new genus from the Nicobar Islands, India. J Econ Tax Bot 7(3):513–516Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Chase MW, Reveal JL (2009) A phylogenetic classification of the land plants to accompany APG III. Bot J Linn Soc 161:122–127CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    The Plant List (2013) Version 1.1. Published on the internet Accessed 26 July 2016
  13. 13.
    Wearn JA, Chase MW, Mabberley DJ, Couch C (2013) Utilizing a phylogenetic plant classification for systematic arrangements in botanic gardens and herbaria. Bot J Linn Soc 172(2):127–141CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Haston E, Richardson JE, Stevens PF, Chase MW, Harris DJ (2009) The Linear Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (LAPG) III: a linear sequence of the families in APG III. Bot J Linn Soc 161:128–131CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Singh H (2010) Handbook on herbaria in india and neighbouring countries. NISCAIR CSIR, New Delhi, p 244Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Bentham G, Hooker JD (1862-1883) Genera plantarum, vol 3, Lovell Reeve, LondonGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Stace CA (2010) Classification by molecules: what’s in it for field botanists? Watsonia 28:103–122Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The National Academy of Sciences, India 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dharmendra Singh Rawat
    • 1
    Email author
  • Bhupendra Singh Bhandari
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesCBSH, G.B. Pant University of Agriculture and TechnologyPantnagarIndia
  2. 2.Department of BotanyH.N.B. Garhwal UniversitySrinagar, GarhwalIndia

Personalised recommendations