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IBBR publication #1968

Floral biology in Olea europaea subsp. cuspidata: A comparative structural and functional characterization

Caceres ME, Pupilli F, Sarri V, Mencuccini M, Ceccarelli M

Flora - Morphology, Distribution, Functional Ecology of Plants 222: 27-36. (2016)
doi: 10.1016/j.flora.2016.03.006

tOlea europaea subsp. cuspidata, belonging to the olive complex, is largely distributed in Asia and Africa.In this research, reproductive structures were studied at both structural and functional levels in Asianand African cuspidata accessions with the aim to broaden the knowledge about the floral biology ofthis subspecies. Morpho-structural observations showed that the cuspidata flower is very similar to theeuropaea one. Nevertheless, some biometric parameters (length of pollen, pistil, ovule, and embryo sac)significantly differed between the two subspecies. Furthermore, numerous and interesting differenceswere observed between Asian and African cuspidata accessions for the morphology of stigma papillatecells, degree of secondary cell wall thickenings of the endothecial cells, persistence of the tapetum, ovuleand embryo sac length. At functional level, main differences were in the synchrony/asynchrony of themicrosporogenesis, percentage of male meiotic abnormalities and sterile pollen, development of ovules.The influence of the growth environment on these features is discussed.

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