Developmental morphology of Ledermanniella bowlingii (Podostemaceae) from Ghana
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Ledermanniella (c. 44 species) is the largest podostemoid genus in Africa. This paper deals with the structure and development of the Ghanaian species Ledermanniella bowlingii (J.B. Hall) C. Cusset (subgenus Ledermanniella). Characters typical for L. bowlingii include: green ribbon-like roots with exogenous lateral roots and endogenous shoots up to 120 cm; most leaves 3–7 times forked, with intrapetiolar stipules; flowers solitary or in clusters, borne on elongate stems or directly on roots; each flower bud inverted within a spathella; flowers unistaminate; tricolpate pollen in dyads; ovary mainly unilocular but bilocular at the base due to a rudimentary septum; mature capsule with eight ribs, 1.0–1.8 mm long, containing 12–34 seeds, dehiscing by two equal valves; capsule stalk with pedicel (10 mm) and gynophore (2 mm); silica bodies absent in all plant parts. Several characters of L. bowlingii are described here for the first time. The paper shows that accurate morphological analyses of African Podostemaceae are badly needed.
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