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The reproductive biology of okra. 2. Self-fertilization kinetics in the cultivated okra (Abelmoschus esculentus), and consequences for breeding


The use of Cruden's index (1977), for studying okra sexual reproductive allocations, indicates a facultative autogamy mode. The purpose of the research described is to obtain more accurate information on the self-fertilization process. For this, self-pollen grain germination was stopped at different times of the day. Twelve varieties of Abelmoschus esculentus were used. Self-fertilization kinetics—expressed by the setting rate—displayed an increase between 7.00 to 16.00 hr. Study of obtained progenies, by stimulated allogamy, confirmed the process and showed that allo-pollen grains deposited on a stigma after midday had only a very little chance of contributing to fertilization. As a result, the polymorphism of the flower structure and particularly the distance between anther and stigmas, insect types and movement habits play major roles in governing okra allogamy. We also show that self-fertilization kinetics can be used to improve controlled hybrid production.

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Hamon, S., Koechlin, J. The reproductive biology of okra. 2. Self-fertilization kinetics in the cultivated okra (Abelmoschus esculentus), and consequences for breeding. Euphytica 53, 49–55 (1991).

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Key words

  • Abelmoschus esculentus
  • okra
  • reproductive biology
  • pollination
  • breeding