Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 259, Issue 1, pp 1–17 | Cite as

Concordant clines and significant correlation between floral and pollen characters in Asarum heterotropoides var. heterotropoides (Aristolochiaceae)

  • H. YamajiEmail author
  • J. Yokoyama
  • H. Ohashi
  • M. Maki


To examine geographic differentiation in Asarum heterotropoides var. heterotropoides in Hokkaido Is. in the northern Japan, in which two putative cryptic species have been suspected to exist, extensive and detailed morphological research on 794 individuals from 44 populations throughout Hokkaido Is. was performed. Among the characters examined, the angle between and tip shape of the calyx lobes and the supratecta of the pollen grains were significantly correlated and were found in similar geographic clines. Among them, the pollen showed two discrete states in almost distinct distribution. Multidimensional scaling analysis showed that individuals within each of the two pollen types had different trends in flower characters. Consequently, we assumed a cline from south to north on Hokkaido Is. For the causes of the cline, the two hypotheses were proposed, primary geographic differentiation or extensive introgressive hybridization between two distinct geographical species existing in the past.


Asarum sect. Asiasarum Asarum heterotropoides var. heterotropoides floral morphology Hokkaido Is. Japan introgressive hybridization pollen variation 


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© Springer-Verlag Wien 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biological Institute, Graduate School of ScienceTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  2. 2.Division of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Graduate School of Life SciencesTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  3. 3.Botanical Garden, Graduate School of ScienceTohoku UniversitySendaiJapan
  4. 4.Pharmacognosy & Medicinal Resources Laboratory, Research DivisionTsumura & CoIbarakiJapan

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