Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 278, Issue 1, pp 43–51

Distribution of scalariform and simple perforation plates within the vessel network in secondary xylem of Araliaceae and its implications for wood evolution

Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00606-008-0130-z

Cite this article as:
Oskolski, A.A. & Jansen, S. Plant Syst Evol (2009) 278: 43. doi:10.1007/s00606-008-0130-z


The distribution of scalariform and simple perforation plates along vessels in Arthrophyllum otopyrenum, Meryta tenuifolia, and Polyscias multijuga (Araliaceae) is examined. In all three species, most vessels bear simple perforation plates only, but the combination of simple and scalariform perforation plates in variable ratios also occurs. Aggregated arrangement of scalariform perforation plates along the vessels was statistically confirmed in some vessel portions. The scalariform perforation plates occur mostly in narrow vessels that are grouped in multiples. Within the clade represented by Polyscias and Arthrophyllum, the evolutionary transition from scalariform to simple perforation plates is realized as the gradual elimination of vessels or vessel portions with scalariform perforation plates, but is not accompanied by a gradual decrease of the number of bars per perforation plate. The narrow vessels that are grouped in vessel multiples are likely to retain the ability to develop scalariform plates, which could promote the evolution from simple to scalariform perforation plates as is the case within Meryta.


Perforation platesVesselsWood evolutionAraliaceaeMerytaPolysciasArthrophyllum

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Komarov Botanical InstituteSt PetersburgRussia
  2. 2.Jodrell LaboratoryRoyal Botanic Gardens, KewRichmondUK