Article: Intramarginal veined Lauraceae leaves from the Albian-Cenomanian of Charente-Maritime (western France)
Eucalyptolaurus depreii gen. et sp. nov. is proposed for angiosperm leaves newly collected from uppermost Albian – lowermost Cenomanian of Charente-Maritime (western France). They consist of simple, narrow, elongate laminas with entire margins and intramarginal veins. The epidermal cells of adaxial cuticle shows small, rounded, blunt papillae outward that protrude inward and fuse together as rolls along and parallel to the margins, while the adaxial cuticle bears brachyparacytic stomatal apparatus that exhibit sunken guard cells and hair bases consisting of a thick-walled pore surrounded by radially arranged differentiated cells. Resin bodies occur inside the mesophyll. These characters closely resemble the lauroid taxa 'Myrtophyllum' and Pandemophyllum from the Cenomanian of the Czech Republic and Dakota (USA) respectively. The narrow angle of basilaminar secondaries and the whole suite of features in the guard cells (sunken guard cells embedded into subsidiary cells and stomatal ledges) strongly support close affinity with the Lauraceae. From the Cenomanian lauraceous reproductive organs and their related leaves already showed high disparity and diversity. In addition they displayed a broad ecological range from freshwater floodplains to brackish swamps. This combined to high diversity of reproductive organs suggest ecological radiation of Lauraceae by the Cenomanian.