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Potential Effects of Temperature on Early Reproductive Development and Progeny Performance in Picea abies (L.) Karst

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In order to enhance cone production in Norway spruce [Picea abies (L.) Karst] seed orchards have been established in more southerly, warmer sites in Norway. This has led to concern and some evidence that seedlings obtained from parent trees grown at warmer sites may not be well adapted if planted in northern regions. Selective events during sexual reproduction in the warmer climate may select for traits not well adapted for cold climates. This study describes ovule and male gametophyte development, fertilization and proembryo and early embryo development under six different temperature regimens of warm or cold, warm-cold or cold-warm, and compares development in relation to temperature sums in degree days (dd) and calendar date. The outside treatment in a cold climate in Norway served as the control, and normal development and few ovule abortions and abnormalities were observed. In no treatments were abnormalities in male gametophyte development observed. In treatments in which trees were kept in the greenhouse throughout the study or moved during the study from the outside to inside the greenhouse, a higher incidence of megagametophyte, egg or embryo abortion was generally observed.


Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02827580117248

Publication date: May 1, 2001

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