Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 257, Issue 3–4, pp 223–232 | Cite as

Floral ontogeny of Cneorum tricoccon L. (Rutaceae)

  • P. Caris
  • E. Smets
  • K. De Coster
  • L. P. Ronse De Craene


The floral ontogeny of the Spurge olive (Cneorum tricoccon L.) is studied by means of scanning electron microscopic observations. Special attention is paid to the sequence of initiation of the floral parts, the occurrence of septal cavities, and the development of the nectariferous tissue. The nectary disc arises as a receptacular outgrowth below the ovary and independently from stamen development. By the extensive growth of this voluminous androgynophore, stamen filaments become enclosed by nectary tissue and as a result, they are seated in pits between the lobes of the disc. Between ovary and style, three lobes are present, which are covered with stomata – their function is unknown. The significance of the unusual trimery of the flower is discussed. Floral developmental evidence supports a Rutalean affinity, although more ontogenetic investigations are needed in Rutaceae, subfamily Spathelioideae.


Androgynophore Cneoraceae Cneorum tricoccon L. Floral ontogeny Nectary Rutaceae Spurge olive 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. APG (The Angiosperm Phylogeny Group) (2003) An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APGII. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 141: 399–436.Google Scholar
  2. Baum, H. 1950Septalspalten im Gynözeum von Koelreuteria paniculataÖsterr. Bot. Z97207215Google Scholar
  3. Boesewinkel, F. D. 1984Development of ovule and seed coat in Cneorum tricoccon LActa Bot. Neerl336170(Cneoraceae)Google Scholar
  4. Chase, M. W., Morton, C. M., Kallunki, J. A. 1999Phylogenetic relationships of Rutaceae: a cladistic analysis of the subfamilies using evidence from rbcL and atpB sequence variationAmer. J. Bot8611911199Google Scholar
  5. Cronquist, A. 1981An integrated system of classification of flowering plantsColumbia University PressNew YorkGoogle Scholar
  6. Daumann, E. 1974Zur Frage nach dem Vorkommen eines Septalnektariums bei Dicotyledonen. Zugleich ein Beitrag zur Blütenmorphologie und Bestäubungsökologie von Buxus L. und Cneorum LPreslia4697109Google Scholar
  7. Endress, P. K. 1998Antirrhinum and Asteridae – evolutionary changes of floral symmetrySymp. Ser. Soc. Exp. Biol51133140Google Scholar
  8. Engler, A. 1931CneoraceaeEngler, A.Prantl, K. eds. Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien (sec. ed.) Bd. 19aW. EngelmannLeipzig184187Google Scholar
  9. Erdtman, G. 1952Angiosperm pollen morphology and taxonomyAlmqvist and WiksellStockholmGoogle Scholar
  10. Heel, W. A. 1988On the development of some gynoecia with septal nectariesBlumea33477504Google Scholar
  11. Lobreau-Callen, D., Jérémie, J. 1986L'espèce Cneorum tricoccon (Cneoraceae, Rutales) représentée à CubaGrana25155158Google Scholar
  12. Lobreau-Callen, D., Nilsson, S., Albers, F., Straka, H. 1978Les Cneoraceae (Rutales): Étude taxonomique, palynologique, et systématiqueGrana17125139Google Scholar
  13. Mabberley, D. J. 1997The plant book – A portable dictionary of the vascular plants (2nd ed.)Cambridge University PressCambridgeGoogle Scholar
  14. Ronse, De Craene L. P., Smets , E. 1998Meristic changes in gynoecium morphology, exemplified by floral ontogeny and anatomyOwens, S. J.Rudall, P. J. eds. Reproductive biologyRoyal Botanic GardensKew85112Google Scholar
  15. Ronse, De Craene L. P., Smets, E., Clinckemaillie, D. 2000Floral ontogeny and anatomy in Koelreuteria with special emphasis on monosymmetry and septal cavitiesPl. Syst. Evol22391107Google Scholar
  16. Ronse, De Craene L. P., Soltis, P. S., Soltis, D. E. 2003Evolution of floral structures in basal angiospermsInt. J. Plant Sci164S329S363Google Scholar
  17. Schmid, R. 1985Functional interpretation of the morphology and anatomy of septal nectariesActa Bot. Neerl34125128Google Scholar
  18. Smets, E. 1988La présence des `nectaria persistentia' chez les Magnoliophytina (Angiospermes)Candollea43709716Google Scholar
  19. Smets, E., Cresens, E. 1988Types of floral nectaries and the concepts ``character'' and ``character-state'' – a reconsiderationvActa Bot. Neerl37121128Google Scholar
  20. Smets, E., Ronse, De Craene L. P., Caris, P., Rudall, P. J. 2000Floral nectaries in monocotyledons: distribution and evolutionWilson, K. L.Morrison, D. A. eds. Monocots: systematics and evolutionCSIRO PublishingMelbourne230240Google Scholar
  21. Straka, H., Albers, F., Mondon, A. 1976Die Stellung und Gliederung der Familie Cneoraceae (Rutales)Beitr. Biol. Pfl52267310Google Scholar
  22. Takhtajan, A. 1997Diversity and classification of flowering plantsColumbia University PressNew YorkGoogle Scholar
  23. Thorne, R. F. 1992An updated phylogenetic classification of the flowering plantsAliso13365389Google Scholar
  24. Traveset, A. 1995Reproductive ecology of Cneorum tricoccon L. (Cneoraceae) in the Balearic IslandsBot. J. Linn. Soc117221232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Tucker, S. C. 1984Unidirectional organ initiation in Leguminous flowersAmer. J. Bot7111391148Google Scholar
  26. Tieghem, M. Ph. 1898Sur les CnéoracéesBull. Mus. Hist. Nat4241244(Paris)Google Scholar
  27. Weberling, F. 1989Morphology of flowers and inflorescencesCambridge University PressCambridgeGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. Caris
    • 1
  • E. Smets
    • 1
  • K. De Coster
    • 1
  • L. P. Ronse De Craene
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Plant SystematicsInstitute of Botany and MicrobiologyK.U.LeuvenBelgium
  2. 2.Royal Botanic Garden EdinburghEdinburghUK

Personalised recommendations