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A new interpretation of floral morphology in Garrya (Garryaceae)

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Previous descriptions of Garrya (Garryaceae) floral morphology are inconsistent. Anatomical studies have long confirmed that the pistillate flowers possess an inferior ovary. Descriptions of the staminate flowers sometimes describe a vestigial superior ovary; other authors report no such structure. New observations of staminate flowers confirm the presence of an intrastaminal structure. I hypothesize that the structure previously interpreted as a vestigial ovary is, in fact, a vestigial nectary disc. Thus the staminate flowers cannot be considered hypogynous and do not contradict the interpretation of the pistillate flowers as epigynous. This observation resolves the paradox of contrasting floral form in the pistillate and staminate flowers.
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Keywords: EUASTERIDS; FLORAL MORPHOLOGY; GARRYA; GARRYALES; OVARY POSITION; PHYLOGENY

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon 97331, U.S.A.

Publication date: 2003-05-01

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