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Seed morphology in some European aconites (Aconitum, Ranunculaceae)


The seed coat morphology, investigated in taxa representative of the main European groups ofAconitum, are in good agreement with the current taxonomy of the genus. The seed coat microcharacteristics (warty epidermal cells) are very constant. There is a trend for the reduction of longitudinal wings on the edges concomitant with the development of ridges and transverse wings on the faces. Another morphological progression leads from smooth to rugulose and eventually to transverse wing-bearing seed faces. A working hypothesis suggests an ecological adaptative significance to these changes.

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Cappelletti, E.M., Poldini, L. Seed morphology in some European aconites (Aconitum, Ranunculaceae). Pl Syst Evol 145, 193–201 (1984).

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Key words

  • Angiosperms
  • Ranunculaceae
  • Aconitum
  • Seed morphology
  • seed coat SEM microcharacteristics
  • taxonomic importance
  • adaptative ecological significance