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Variation and Species Limits in Agamospermous Grasses

Elizabeth A. Kellogg
Systematic Botany
Vol. 15, No. 1 (Jan. - Mar., 1990), pp. 112-123
DOI: 10.2307/2419021
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2419021
Page Count: 12
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Variation and Species Limits in Agamospermous Grasses
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Abstract

Agamospermy in the grasses is well-documented and is generally facultative. Hybridization among morphological clones or groups of clones is common, forming geographically widespread agamospermous complexes. These are morphologically variable, but all variation is continuous; all members are potentially interfertile, and studies of cytology indicate a history of extensive hybridization and allopolyploidy. Thus microspecies do not occur. Whether morphology, interbreeding, strict monophyly, or other cohesive mechanisms are used as criteria of conspecificity, the taxonomic conclusion is the same: an entire complex must be treated as a single species.

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