On the Morphology and Anatomy of Turtle Grass, Thalassia Testudinum (Hydrocharitaceae). III. Floral Morphology and Anatomy
Abstract:Flowers in Thalassia are restricted to the axil of a foliage leaf on a short-shoot. Plants may be dioecious with a preponderance of male over female flowers in the ratio 12 : 1. Female flowers are usually solitary; male flowers are in clusters of up to five. In any one season a single short-shoot will have only one fertile foliage leaf, so that a series of developmental stages is not available in one short-shoot. Flowers are subtended by a pair of bracts, fused to make a two-lobed spathe; the individual flowers are strictly one-flowered inflorescences.
Male flowers have three tepals, 8 to 13 stamens, and no pistillode. Female flowers have three tepals and an inferior ovary. This is interpreted as being made up of from 6 to 9 carpels of which a number are sterile. Fertile carpels include only one ovule. This gynoecium is therefore more reduced and specialized than in other Hydrocharitaceae. Pollination is entirely submarine, but the mechanism is not yet understood.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 1969-06-01
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