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Reproductive Significance of Indirect Pollen-Tube Growth in Dalechampia (Euphorbiaceae)

W. Scott Armbruster, Phillip Martin, Janet Kidd, Ruth Stafford and Denise G. Rogers
American Journal of Botany
Vol. 82, No. 1 (Jan., 1995), pp. 51-56
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2445786
Page Count: 6
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Reproductive Significance of Indirect Pollen-Tube Growth in Dalechampia (Euphorbiaceae)
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Abstract

Most species of Dalechampia have expanded stigmatic surfaces that extend from the stylar tip part way down the sides of the elongated styles. Pollen grains landing at the stylar tip grow tubes directly down the style to the ovary. Pollen grains landing on the lateral stigmatic surfaces, however, exhibit indirect pollen-tube growth: the tubes grow first to the stylar tip, bend 180⚬, and then grow to the ovary. Indirect pollen-tube growth appears to be reproductively important: more than half the arriving pollen lands on the lateral stigmatic surfaces, and virtually all of these grains produce tubes that grow indirectly to the ovary; pollen on the lateral surface fertilizes seeds about as effectively as pollen at the tip (with direct tube growth). Indirect pollen-tube growth may be the result of a correlated response to selection for expanded stigmatic surfaces in Dalechampia, or it may be an adaptation to increase the intensity of pollen competition.

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