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Abstract Detail

Recent Topics Posters

Walsh, Seana [1], Pender, Richard [1], Morden, Clifford [2].

The floral biology of Brighamia insignis (Olulu), an endangered Hawaiian lobeliad (Campanulaceae).

Brighamia insignis, or Olulu, is a critically endangered Hawaiian lobeliad that is believed to have evolved flowers adapted for moth pollination. Despite its conservation status, little research has been conducted concerning the reproductive biology of this species. We studied a suite of floral biology traits (e.g., phenology, nectar characteristics, floral morphology) and the breeding system of cultivated B. insignis plants to determine if floral biology traits conform to previously proposed hypotheses regarding this species pollination syndrome. On average, flowers remain open for ± 6 days, spending ca. 1.6 days in the male (pollen dispersal) phase and ca. 4.6 days in the female (stigma receptive) phase. Corolla color progresses through distinctive phases, possibly to act as cues to pollinators. Nectar sugar composition, flora morphology, and fragrance (produced over the entire course of a flowers life) provide further evidence that B. insignis likely evolved flowers adapted for insect (entomophilous) pollination. Manipulative pollination treatments suggest that the plants used in the study are self-incompatible and require out-cross (xenogamous) pollen to form viable seeds. Although preliminary, these results have pertinent implications for the conservation of this species. In the absence of natural pollinators, anthropogenic out-cross pollination may be the best, if not the only, means to maintain this species both in wild and restored populations.

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1 - University of Hawaii at Mānoa, Department of Botany, 3190 Maile Way, Honolulu, HI, 96822, USA
2 - University Of Hawaii, Department Of Botany, 3190 Maile Way, HONOLULU, HI, 96822-2279, USA

floral biology
breeding system
Brighamia insignis.

Presentation Type: Recent Topics Poster
Session: P
Location: Battelle South/Convention Center
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2012
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PRT035
Abstract ID:1331

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