, Volume 78, Issue 4, pp 496-501

Phenotypic plasticity in Phlox

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Three species of Phlox (Polemoniaceae) were grown in 6 greenhouse treatments. A variety of traits were recorded and the correlations among them were computed for each treatment. The phenotypic correlations between characters are significantly altered when plants are grown under different environmental conditions. These changes in correlation structure result from the differential phenotypic plasticity of traits. Partial correlations between flower production and other traits are also environment-dependent. Such changes can alter the intensity of, and possibly the response to, selection on traits correlated with fitness in natural plant populations.