Some reproductive aspects of three Chihuahuan Desert Nyctaginaceae

TitleSome reproductive aspects of three Chihuahuan Desert Nyctaginaceae
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication1975
AuthorsDelson RKoskela
Number of Pages42
Date Published1975
UniversityNew Mexico State University
CityLas Cruces, New Mexcio
Thesis TypeM.S. Thesispp
Call Number00049
Keywordsdissertation, dissertations, Nyctaginaceae,reproduction, plant, Ammocodon, plant,Acleisanthes, plant,reproduction, plant,Selinocarpus, reproduction,Nyctaginaceae, theses, thesis
AbstractThe distribution of all three of the Nyctagineaceae species studied, Ammocodon chenopodiodes, Selinocarpus lanceolatus and Acleisanthes longiflora, is centered in the Chihuahuan Desert. All three genera regularly produce cleistogamous flowers, flowers in which the corolla does not open, but which, nevertheless, produce fruit and seeds as a result of self-fertilization. The relative frequency of cleistogamous and chasmogamous flowers (open flowers capable of outcrossing) is examined. Acleisanthes and Selinocarpus shift from a high percentage of cleistogamous flowers in late spring to a high percentage of chasmogamous flowers in summer. This shift appears to be co-ordinated with the onset of the summer rains and possibly with the presence of their pollinator, the hawk moth. The proportion of chasmogamous flowers on Ammocodon plants changes throughout a growing season, although the change is not neccessarily the same in all populations. The absence of a distinct shift in the proportion of chasmogamy in Ammocodon may be due to the fact that, in comparison with the other two species, Ammocodon is pollinated by a general array of insects and therefore not dependent on a specific pollinator. Cleistogamy in all three species appears to insure seed-set, with a relatively small expenditure of energy to the plant, under conditions unsuitable for cross-pollination