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The relationship of the female reproductive success of Eucalyptus globulus to the endogenous properties of the flower

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Suitor, S and Potts, BM and Brown, PH and Gracie, AJ and Gore, PL (2009) The relationship of the female reproductive success of Eucalyptus globulus to the endogenous properties of the flower. Sex Plant Reproduction, 22 (1). pp. 37-41. ISSN 0934-0882

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Abstract

Low capsule and seed set is a major factor
limiting seed production in Eucalyptus globulus seed
orchards. Controlled pollination studies showed that the
reproductive success (number of seeds produced per flower
pollinated) was primarily determined by the female. We
aimed to identify the factors contributing to the differences
in reproductive success between female genotypes in terms
of the physical and anatomical properties of the flower. We
studied pairs of genotypes of high and low reproductive
success from each of three races (Furneaux Group, Strzelecki
Ranges and Western Otways) growing in a seed
orchard. Controlled pollinations were performed on six
females and along with flower physical measurements,
pollen tube growth and seed set were assessed. Overall tree
reproductive success was positively correlated with flower
size, ovule numbers, style size, cross-sectional area of
conductive tissue within the style (all of which were intercorrelated)
and the proportion of pollen tubes reaching the
bottom of the style. Significant positive correlations of
reproductive success and flower physical properties
between different ramets of the same genotypes across
seasons suggests a genetic basis to the variation observed.
The majority of pollen tube attrition occurred within the
first millimetre of the cut style and appeared to be associated
with differences in style physiology. When examined
as pairs within races the difference in reproductive success
for the Western Otways pair was simply explained by
differences in flower size and the number of ovules per
flower. Physical features did not differ significantly for the Strzelecki Ranges pair, but the proportion of pollen tubes
reaching the bottom of the style was lower in the less
reproductively successful genotype, suggesting an endogenous
physiological constraint to pollen tube growth. The
difference in reproductive success between the females
from the Furneaux Group was associated with a combination
of these factors.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Eucalyptus globulus Reproductive success Pollen tube Flower Style
Journal or Publication Title: Sex Plant Reproduction
Page Range: pp. 37-41
ISSN: 0934-0882
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1007/s00497-008-0089-5
Additional Information:

The original publication is available at www.springerlink.com

Date Deposited: 23 Feb 2009 22:55
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:56
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