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breeding system of Ramosmania heterophylla-dioecy or heterostyly
- OWENS, SIMON J., JACKSON, ANDREW, MAUNDER, MICHAEL, RUDALL, PAULA, JOHNSON, MARGARET A.T.
- Botanical journal of the Linnean Society 1993 v.113 no.1 pp. 77-86
- breeding, chromosome number, dioecy, embryo sac, flowers, genes, pollen, pollination, seed set, seeds, stigma
- The breeding system of Ramosmania heterophylla- dioecy or heterostyly? Ramosmania heterophylla (Cafe Marron), endemic to Rodrigues, Mauritius, is now almost extinct, since it appears to exist in the wild as a single plant, but has recently been successfully established at Kew by means of vegetative cuttings. Despite plenty of flowers on the Kew plants, attempts to set seed by manual pollination for seed banking purposes have failed. This investigation showed that pollen is viable and that embryo sacs appear fully developed. Lack of seed set is a result of the non-functional stigmas on short styles. The most likely explanation is that the last-known plant is male, although heterostyly or a mutant stylar developmental gene cannot be ruled out. The plant has a chromosome number of 2n= 22.