Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 180, Issue 3–4, pp 227–233 | Cite as

Intrapopulation variation in the breeding system ofVillarsia lasiosperma (Menyanthaceae), a distylous species

  • Robert Ornduff


The restricted perennial diploid herb,Villarsia lasiosperma, of southwestern Western Australia has distylous flowers with dimorphism in style and stamen length, stigma morphology, and pollen size. In order to assess the presence and nature of an incompatibility system in this species, a crossing program was carried out using 17 plants grown from seeds collected in two field populations. Pollen stainabilities of these plants mostly exceeded 95%. Mean seed-set of Longs following intermorph pollinations was c. 24 seeds per pollination and for Shorts was c. 16 seeds per pollination. Approximately three-quarters of the Longs and Shorts produced no seeds after self-pollination; the remainder produced very few seeds following such pollinations. No Shorts produced seeds after intramorph cross-pollinations. However, about half the Longs exhibited various levels of weakened intramorph incompatibility, with mean seed-sets following intramorph cross-pollinations up to half the mean seed-sets following intermorph pollinations. In the behavior of Longs, the incompatibility system ofV. lasiosperma differs from the idealized distylous breeding system, but resembles that of a purported close relative,V. exaltata of eastern and southeastern Australia.

Key words

Angiosperms Menyanthaceae Villarsia lasiosperma Breeding system heterostyly distyly 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Ornduff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Integrative BiologyUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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